OM: Dozens to hundreds of Eritreans in the Netherlands are victims of violent human smuggling

Dozens to hundreds of Eritreans living in the Netherlands are victims of people smugglers who torture and extort refugees. The Public Prosecution Service confirms this after reporting by News hour. The OM has heard 191 people for a criminal case with seven suspects so far.

“The interrogations show that people who flee Eritrea fall into the hands of a ruthless gang that does the most horrific things over the backs of people,” says a spokesman for the OM. “If these people then arrive in Europe in rickety boats, they are still not safe because they are extorted to pay money for relatives.”

The torture took place in a camp in Libya, witnesses deny News hour. There, refugees were held captive and forced to call relatives to ask for money before being allowed to continue their journey. A press officer suspects that millions of euros were raised in this way.

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The Public Prosecution Service is working with Interpol, Europol and several European countries to disrupt and shut down the network, the spokesperson says to NRC. “The Public Prosecution Service does not feel that it can solve this case on its own.”

The two main suspects in the case are Tewelde G., also known as Walid, and Kidane Zekarias H.. Walid was extradited to the Netherlands at the end of last year, H. was arrested in Sudan last month and has been detained in the United Arab Emirates ever since. The Netherlands has requested his extradition.

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