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Human traffickers torture immigrants who tried to reach Europe via Iran
Human Traffickers
Photo Courtesy: Unsplash

Human traffickers torture immigrants who tried to reach Europe via Iran

| @indiablooms | 25 Mar 2024, 05:47 pm

Human traffickers and notorious smugglers are trying to cruelly treat immigrants who illegally attempt to reach Europe via Iran by holding them for ransom.

The smugglers in Pakistan with the help of their sub-agents detain and torture immigrants aspiring to reach Europe, film the ordeal, and send it back to their respective families to seek money for the safe release of their loved ones, reported Dawn News.

According to reports, three such events were reported in which 10 young men were tortured and incarcerated by the gangs.

A few of them paid money to secure freedom while some were released by the Iran police in collaboration with the Pakistani embassy in Tehran, Dawn News reported.

The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) said that the dangerous trend of arranging the travel of illegal immigrants and detaining them abroad to extract heavy amounts — by local gangs in cohort with their international counterparts — has picked steam in recent times.

A Pakistani resident named  Muhammad Husnain, his cousin Faisal and neighbour Anwar left for Europe via Iran last month.

They were on their way to the country with their agent  Muhammad Sarwar on valid visas.

The agent promised to take them to Greece via Iran and Turkey.

Upon arriving in Tehran, Sarwar sought $2,500 each from the trio to send them to Europe. The three contacted their families in Pakistan for the money. As the families failed to raise the required amount, Sarwar took them to a three-storey house in Tehran on the pretext that he would arrange their travel against a few hundred bucks, Dawn News reported.

“When we reached the house, the people present there overpowered us and shut us in a small room. After 24 hours, some three to four persons wearing facemasks gave us water and afterwards, they unleashed brutal torture on us. They also filmed the torture and sent it to our families in Pakistan demanding $5,000 each for freeing us,” Husnain told Dawn.

 “When our families told the captors that they could not arrange the money they became crueller. They cut an ear of Faisal, burnt the hand of Anwar, and put nails into my feet. They would use electric shocks to torture us and send the videos to our families which finally paid a sum of Rs300,000 using ‘Easypaisa’ to a pointed person,” he said and added their captors subsequently put them in separate rooms.

“After 22 days of captivity, I got a chance to escape. My captors were confident that there were nails in my feet and I could not walk. One day they didn’t bother to lock me from the outside and I managed to escape. On road, I came across a Pakistani driver who helped me connect with my family who requested him to drop me at the Pakistani embassy,” Husnain said.

Iran Police recovered Faisal and Anwar and later handed them over to Pakistani Embassy.

The FIA in Pakistan's Punjab arrested agent Muhammad Sarwar after he returned home after “selling” the three men to the gang.

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