The latest Financial Action Task Force (FATF) report on illegal migrants has alleged that a network of Indian and Pakistani nationals are involved in trafficking humans to Poland.
FATF submitted a 77-page report on ‘money laundering and terrorist financing risks from migrant smuggling’. The report alleged that the money collected for trafficking people is transferred through hawala channels and proceeds laundered with the help of legitimate businesses such as shops, travel agencies or transport companies.
The report cited a case study done by Poland’s General Inspector of Financial Information. “Among companies of interest are Polish limited liability companies whose management boards are composed of citizens of India and Pakistan, who conduct currency exchange transactions through the currency exchange office. Citizens of India were involved in international money laundering of the proceeds of crimes committed in other European countries. In addition, the criminal group organising and executing the smuggling of illegal immigrants from South Asia to Europe was identified,” the report said.
FATF is a global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog. The inter-governmental body sets international standards to prevent illegal activities and terrorist financing.
“Funds obtained from criminal activity were transferred through bank accounts held in another European country and Poland. Bank accounts in the name of companies where the presidents were citizens of India and Pakistan were credited with funds from another European country, which were then converted via an online currency exchange to end up in bank accounts held in Asian countries,” the report said.
The report said that many countries “do not consider migrant smuggling a high-risk crime for money laundering and only very few investigations or prosecutions are initiated or concluded”, the report said. “In recent years, smugglers have started to widely use social media, encrypted digital communication services in their operations for recruitment and coordination,” the report said.