RealNews

Sheremetyevo Passport Ring Is Busted

Police announced Tuesday that they have busted up a ring of active and former Federal Border Service officials who forged Russian foreign travel passports and arranged for wanted criminals to sneak out of the country through Sheremetyevo Airport. City police detectives working with Federal Security Service agents arrested six suspected members of the gang and found 40 forged passports in one of the suspects’ apartments, a police spokeswoman said. Some of the passports were stamped with fake U.S. visas, apparently to make them appear more legitimate, she said. The ring operated by entering the forged passports into the Federal Border Service’s electronic data base and then arranging for the holders to pass through the airport checkpoint, the spokeswoman said, speaking on condition she not be identified. The fee varied from $3,500 to $10,000, she said. “The largest channel for smuggling people who are on the wanted list has been shut down,” Fillip Zolotnitsky, spokesman for the economic crime directorate, told Interfax on Monday. Calls to Zolotnitsky went unanswered. Full Story

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