The national tax authority (NAV) announced on Monday that customs officials have apprehended two foreign nationals trying to transport 29 illegal migrants to Italy in a truck. A Romanian and a Greek man hid four women and 25 men among furniture and moving boxes and told inspecting officers they were transporting personal property when the truck with German licence plates was stopped in Zala County in southwest Hungary. The migrants, who said they were from Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India, were “suffocating” in the overheated cargo hold “and might not have made it to the end of the journey”, NAV said. The smugglers and the migrants were handed over to the Zala County police, NAV said.
Meanwhile, a local court has ordered the detention of a Romanian driver who attempted to smuggle 24 illegal migrants from Hungary to Slovenia, hiding them in his truck “under inhuman circumstances”, Zala County Prosecutor’s Office said on Monday. The 39-year-old driver arranged to meet the group of Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan migrants near Arad and hid them in small spaces inside the vehicle’s compartment. Hungarian customs officers conducted an inspection at a parking lot on motorway M70 at Csörnyeföld near the border with Slovenia last Thursday and discovered the migrants squeezed in the compartment without getting sufficient fresh air, water and food, she said. The Romanian driver was taken into custody on charges of people smuggling and physical abuse over the weekend, Jánky said.