“Migration pressure high” – 700 people smugglers arrested since May 2022


Between May 2022 and March 2023, the police took 700 people smugglers out of circulation. Interior Minister Gerhard Karner (ÖVP) announced this at a press conference on Thursday.

More than a year after the start of Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, Karner said the goal was to continue on the path it had taken in the fight against organized crime and people smuggling. Shortly afterwards, the “smuggling mafia” took advantage of this situation, according to the interior minister.

Number of seizures is increasing
According to Karner, the number of attacks had increased “because it was advertised that Europe is open”. It is therefore imperative that “we protect those who need help and take action against those who exploit the system”.

In this context, the Minister of the Interior referred to the 700 people smugglers who had been arrested. “There are big and small fish here,” said the minister. As an example, he cited the case of a 29-year-old Romanian who illegally brought about 6,000 people to Austria.

“Dealing with high migratory pressure”
Karner highlighted four points in the fight against smugglers. In addition to border controls, close measures, international cooperation and accelerated procedures are needed to cope with “the high migratory pressure”.

Source: Krone


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