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Press Release

Indictment filed in smuggling of migrants case

19 April 2013

A EULEX Special Prosecutor from the Special Prosecution Office of Kosovo filed an indictment at the Prizren Basic Court against an individual charged with the criminal offences of organized crime and smuggling of migrants.

The prosecution alleges that between February 2012 and April 2012, the defendant was responsible for organizing the smuggling of migrants from Turkey, Kosovo and other origin countries through Montenegro and Croatia and into Slovenia, Italy and other European Union countries.

The defendant was arrested in April 2012 as part of a joint operation between EULEX and Kosovo Police. He is also alleged to be a key member and organizer of a transnational criminal group which operates throughout the Balkans as well as Turkey, Hungary, Austria, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, France, Germany, Greece, Czech Republic and Slovakia.

The defendant is part of the same case in which the so-called 'Fimathu' operation was conducted on January 29, 2013 under the umbrella of EUROPOL. In that operation, 103 suspects were arrested in 10 countries and 117 searches were conducted. Three persons were also arrested in Kosovo on the same European common action day. 12 others of the same network had already been arrested in Kosovo in 2011 and 2012.

Indictments against three other defendants were filed in December 2012 and February 2013.

The investigation and prosecution of the case is conducted by a EULEX Special Prosecutor of Special Prosecution Office of Kosovo together with a Joint Investigation Team of EULEX Police Organized Crime Investigation Unit and Kosovo Police Department of Organized Crime.