20:58 GMT29 January 2020
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    A group of nine people including their leader, a citizen of Slovakia, have been charged in the Hungarian city of Mosonmagyarovar with the smuggling of migrants from refugee camps in Hungary into the countries of Western Europe, media reported on Thursday.

    PRAGUE (Sputnik) According to the Teraz news portal, the Slovakian citizen allegedly provided the smugglers with transport, money and mobile phones while two citizens of Afghanistan were searching for the potential clients among migrants in various refugee camps in Hungary. The group reportedly included six more people.

    According to the media, from July 2014 to February 2015 the group made 21 trips from Hungary to Western Europe, smuggling around 90 refugees. Each of the migrants paid some 400-600 euros ($425-$638). The criminal probe was carried out by a joint group of Slovakian and Hungarian investigators.

    The European Union is facing the worst migration crisis since World War II. It escalated in 2015 with hundreds of thousands of people form the Middle East and North Africa seeking asylum in the EU member states. The EU border agency Frontex detected over 1.83 million illegal border crossings in 2015.

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