• Thu. Jul 25th, 2024

French judge frees 25 Indians held over trafficking suspicion

Byusanewscart.com

Dec 28, 2023

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France’s legal authorities eventually released the detained individuals after finding no evidence of wrongdoing on their part

A French customs car with the grounded Airbus A340 in the background at Vatry airport in France. The plane was kept on the tarmac for four days over suspected human trafficking. — AFP
A French customs car with the grounded Airbus A340 in the background at Vatry airport in France. The plane was kept on the tarmac for four days over suspected human trafficking. — AFP 
 

Twenty-five Indian passengers who were held in France due to suspicion of human trafficking have been freed by a judge’s order, announced by prosecutors on Wednesday.

The judge made this decision because the head of the border police at Charles De Gaulle airport in France did not bring the case to him within the required timeframe set by the law, as per the prosecutors.

According to the Bobigny public prosecutor’s office, these individuals are now free to move around as they wish, even if their stay in France is not officially approved. They were released on Tuesday, while five among them, who were minors, were taken into the care of child welfare services.

These 25 individuals were part of 303 passengers who boarded a plane operated by Legend Airlines from Dubai. They intended to travel to Nicaragua but faced a setback when their aircraft made a stopover at Vatry airport in northeastern France on December 21. The plane remained grounded for four days following an anonymous tipoff.

Initially suspected of human trafficking, the charges against them were dropped after authorities confirmed that these passengers had boarded the plane willingly, with no coercion involved.

However, two people who stayed in France are being questioned by the police over potential involvement in people trafficking.

As for the rest of the passengers, the plane carrying the remaining 276 individuals returned to India on Tuesday after this ordeal.

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