Dutch Police Bust Nigerian Fake Wedding Scam

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Dutch
police have busted a wedding scam involving Dutch citizens being paid to go to
Britain to marry illegal Nigerian immigrants so they can obtain residency
there, prosecutors said Friday.
The gendarmerie, responsible for border security,
“detained 16 women and seven men this week on the suspicion that they travelled
to Britain to enter into fake marriages,” it said in a statement.

“They are almost all of Dutch Antillean origin and
were flown to Britain to get married”, mainly to Nigerian men and women, it
added.

Once married, the Nigerians would get legal
residency in Britain and access to state welfare. In return, the Dutch
collaborators would be paid 2500 euros ($3,100) to 3,500 euros.
Members of the Dutch Caribbean community were used
so they could be used as look-alikes for Nigerians’ real partners, who would be
brought into Britain after the “wedding” to make the swap complete, prosecution
service spokesman Wim de Bruin told AFP.
Called Operation Dutch Conclusion, the two-year
investigation involved Dutch and British law and border security agencies and
continental policing agency Europol.
Dutch popular daily De Telegraaf reported Friday
that British law enforcement officers had made arrests at fake “weddings” with
bride and groom on the verge of exchanging vows.
“We have seen wedding dresses with the price tag
still on them being used by three ‘brides’ in one day, swapping the dress just
outside the church,” the paper quoted an officer only identified as Michel.
Some 81 people have been arrested over the last two
years, De Bruin said, mainly in Britain, of whom 66 have already been sentenced
to between a few months and six years on human trafficking charges.
Those arrested in the Netherlands also face human
trafficking charges, the statement added

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