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Wednesday, December 2, 2015, 21:57

Police bust massive people smuggling ring


Police bust massive people smuggling ring
Counterfeit seals and other articles used in a massive people smuggling ring in Jiangmen city, South China's Guangdong province, were seized by the police. (Photo/IC)

Chinese police arrested 22 suspects and discovered more than 35,000 forged visas after busting a people smuggling ring that had helped 3,200 Chinese to illegally go to North and South America, Guangzhou Daily reported.

Police in Jiangmen city, South China's Guangdong province, found 270 counterfeit official seals and froze more than 11 million yuan ($1.7 million) in bank accounts when cracking down on the gang which had earned 220 million yuan through illegal migration, according to inside information.

The ring, based in Guangdong and East China's Fujian province, was uncovered as part of the biggest crackdown in the past decade.

"The crackdown comes at the right time to destroy the ring's development, since the kingpin surnamed Li says he planned to monopolize the smuggling business in the Americas", said a police officer using the alias Luo Wei.

Li, born in the 1970s, specialized in forging documents and ran a travel firm in South China's Shenzhen, which was used as cover for his human smuggling business.

More than 70 percent of the illegal migrants smuggled into the Americas were young men in their 20s, who wanted to work there and earn money "just like their parents or grandparents going abroad in this way", said an anonymous officer.

The crackdown was launched after Shenzhen border control officials captured 12 people born in Jiangmen city and one suspected gang member after finding they held counterfeit visas for a South American country on Feb 15, 2014.

After five months' investigation, 25 teams of police in Jiangmen, Shenzhen, Guangzhou and Beijing arrested other 19 ring members including Li on July 9 this year.

The case is now under further investigation, according to Guangzhou Daily.

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