Ljubljana criminal investigators have completed two separate criminal investigations against criminal gangs that escorted foreigners across the border and across the territory of the Republic of Slovenia.
In the first case, on the basis of collected information and the results of covert investigative measures in pre-trial proceedings, it was established that the criminal group prepared, organised and executed criminal offenses of Prohibited Crossing of the State Border or Territory from at least 2020 to 2021. With the evidence gathered, criminal investigators were able to identify and prove at least four crimes of organised crime. During all this time, it has been proven that they have organised prohibited border crossings and transports through Slovenia for at least 116 foreigners from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The Criminal Police Sector of the Ljubljana Police Administration conducted an investigation, directed by the competent state prosecutor’s office in Ljubljana, against 5 persons who formed the network of the criminal group. In the territory of Slovenia, they were engaged in the commission of criminal offenses, while individual members of the criminal group had certain roles.
It was established that in the territory of Slovenia the criminal group was led by a citizen of Slovenia, living in the area of Ljubljana. In Italy, however, it was led by at least three unidentified members. Each of the members of the association had a specific role, and against illegal payment, foreigners who did not have a permit to enter and stay in the Republic of Slovenia were illegally smuggled into the territory of the Republic of Slovenia via Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia. They were then transported through it, assisted in hiding and smuggled into the territory of the Italian Republic. The crimes were committed in such a way that there was a serious danger to human life. It was established that foreigners paid considerable sums for the illegal route (route from BIH to Italy approx. 3,500 euros).
Criminal investigators carried out covert investigative measures (covert surveillance, electronic communications control and control of bank data) to obtain important information and evidence against members of the criminal group. The investigation also included international cooperation with Italy through existing police channels for the operational exchange of information, and on the basis of an issued European investigation order.
On May 10th, 2021, the Ljubljana Police Department carried out a final operation in which it arrested three persons, 2 citizens of Slovenia and a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and ordered their detention for searching and seizing objects used in the crime (documents, notes, notebooks, telephones, money, maps with marked crossings of the state border from the Republic of Croatia to the Republic of Slovenia, receipts of money and other documentation). The seized items have been evaluated and analysed using special procedures that require specialist knowledge, and the procedures are time consuming. All of them were brought before the investigating judge of the District Court in Ljubljana, who ordered detention of all three suspects. Given the number of illegal refugees arrested, there is a high probability that members of a criminal group obtained at least 406,000.00 euros in illegal property by committing criminal offenses.
In the second case, on the basis of collected information and the results of covert investigative measures in pre-trial proceedings, it was established that a similar criminal group prepared, organised and executed criminal offenses of Prohibited Crossing of the State Border or Territory under Article 308 / III, VI KZ-1G from at least 2020 to 2021 on the territory of Slovenia. The evidence gathered managed to identify and prove at least 12 organised crimes. During all this time, it was proved that at least 91 foreigners from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq and Bangladesh have crossed or been transported illegally through Slovenia.
SKP PU Ljubljana conducted an investigation against six persons who formed the network of a criminal group that was engaged in the commission of criminal offenses on the territory of Slovenia, where individual members of the criminal group also had their specific roles.
On June 17th, 2021, the SKP PU Ljubljana carried out a final operation in which four persons were deprived of liberty, namely three citizens of Slovenia and one citizen of Serbia. All of them were brought before the investigating judge of the Ljubljana Police Department, who ordered detention against three suspects, and house arrest was ordered for one suspect.
In this case, too, covert investigative measures were taken. International cooperation took place with Italy and Croatia and through existing police channels for the operational exchange of information. The transfer of money for illegal enforcement took place through transactions of the international payment system “MoneyGram” and “Western Union Money Transfer”. Thus, we can confirm that the members obtained illegal property gain in the total amount of at least 28,671 euros during the operation of the organised crime.