Irish law enforcement helps nab 130 child trafficking suspects in European operation

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More than 22,480 law enforcement officers from 22 countries, including Ireland, took part in Europol’s ‘days of action’ from June 6-13, which saw checks carried out at sea, land and and European airlines, with an additional focus on busy routes to Europe.

In addition to the 130 criminals who have been arrested, around 60 additional suspects have been identified and 100 new investigations have been opened.

In total, more than 130 possible victims of human trafficking have been identified, of which more than a dozen have been confirmed as minors. The checks detected more than 220 false documents.

During the two-week operation, law enforcement also verified the identities of more than 11,130 minors, “who remain the most vulnerable group among those trafficked and exploited”.

“Many are victims of sexual exploitation, forced begging or different types of forced crime, including petty crime and drug trafficking,” Europol said in a statement.

“They also become victims of labor exploitation and domestic slavery.”

Europol said it supported the coordination of operational activities, facilitated the exchange of information and provided analytical support.

“During the days of action, Europol activated a virtual command post to facilitate the exchange of information in real time, while dedicated analysts cross-checked operational information with Europol’s databases. they added.

“This provided additional investigative leads for national law enforcement authorities.

In addition to Ireland, participating countries included Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Sweden as well as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Liechtenstein, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia. , Ukraine and the United Kingdom.

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