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Ukrainian Security Service dismantles underground “Passport Desk”

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In a major breakthrough, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) successfully conducted an operation to shut down an illegal operation involved in the production of counterfeit documents used to facilitate the illegal migration of foreigners both within Ukraine and the European Union. The operation led to the arrest of the mastermind behind the operation and eight of his accomplices in various regions across Ukraine.

The crackdown came as a result of a well-coordinated special operation that took place in Vinnytsia, Lviv, Odessa, Kharkiv, and Donetsk oblasts. Among those apprehended were individuals involved in the organization of the criminal activity, including a former official of the disbanded police force.

The criminal group was offering their clients a range of counterfeit documents, including fake passports, temporary residency permits in Ukraine, and driver’s licenses. These forged documents were designed to enable illegal migrants to move within the country and even gain unauthorized access to other European Union countries.

The fraudulent “passport desk” had been operating covertly, providing its services to individuals seeking to bypass immigration controls and gain unlawful entry into Ukraine and the European Union. The SBU’s intervention has effectively disrupted this illicit network, preventing further exploitation of illegal migrants and protecting the national security interests of Ukraine and the European Union member states.

Colonel Oleksandr Zinchenko, the spokesperson for the Security Service of Ukraine, highlighted the significance of the operation, emphasizing the SBU’s commitment to combatting organized crime and ensuring the integrity of the nation’s borders. He praised the cooperation between various law enforcement agencies and the intelligence community, which played a pivotal role in the success of the operation.

The detained individuals now face a series of serious charges, including forgery of official documents, organizing illegal migration, and involvement in criminal conspiracy. The investigation is ongoing, with authorities determined to uncover any potential connections to broader criminal networks involved in illegal activities.

The SBU’s decisive action in dismantling this underground “passport desk” demonstrates their continued efforts to protect the country from threats posed by organized crime and illegal immigration. This operation sends a clear message that such activities will not be tolerated, and the perpetrators will be brought to justice.

As the investigation unfolds, the Ukrainian government remains vigilant in safeguarding its borders and working closely with international partners to prevent the abuse of forged documents in facilitating illegal activities. The dismantling of this criminal operation is a significant step towards upholding the rule of law and preserving the security of both Ukraine and the European Union.

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