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Europe

Passport forgers arrested in France, Belgium

media Sample French biometric passports AFP

Police in France and Belgium on Thursday arrested 12 people allegedly involved in a passport forging operation. The European police agency, Europol, said the 11 people were arrested in France and one in Belgium for allegedly participating in a network producing passports for illegal travel to Britain.

The "French-based Pakistani and Bangladeshi organised crime network" provided "high-quality fake EU passports that had been produced by expert forgers in Belgium and France," Europol said in a statement.

One of the people arrested in France is a doctor who was alleged to have been providing false medical certificates to illegal immigrants in France, according to Europol.

Investigators found that the network charged migrants 12,000 euros to be smuggled from Bangladesh to France, via Sweden, and another 5,000 euros to get from France to Britain.

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