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World Four key suspects in Hungary migrant truck deaths jailed for 25 years

16:52  14 june  2018
16:52  14 june  2018 Source:   msn.com

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KECSKEMET, Hungary (Reuters) - Four people smugglers were jailed for 25 years on Thursday for the deaths of 71 men, women and children whose decomposing bodies were found crammed inside a truck dumped on an Austrian motorway three years ago.

KECSKEMET, Hungary (AP) – Four men suspected of being involved in the deaths of 71 migrants found in a truck in Austria were placed under preliminary arrest on Saturday by a Hungarian court.

Austrian officials carry a coffin with the body of one of the 71 migrants found suffocated in an abandoned truck on an Austrian highway in August 2015: Austrian officials carry a coffin with the body of one of the 71 migrants found suffocated in an abandoned truck on an Austrian highway in 2015. © Provided by AFP Austrian officials carry a coffin with the body of one of the 71 migrants found suffocated in an abandoned truck on an Austrian highway in 2015.

The four main suspects involved in the gruesome deaths of 71 migrants in a truck on an Austrian highway in 2015 were jailed for 25 years on Thursday, in a case that sparked international revulsion.

The trial took place in Hungary, which took over the proceedings from Vienna after it emerged that the migrants had suffocated in Hungary.

Ten other suspects were also found guilty and handed prison sentences of between three and 12 years by the court in the southern town of Kecskemet.

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Hungarian police said they had arrested four men after 71 migrants were found dead in a truck across the border in Austria on Thursday. Austin Bomb Suspect Dead After Blowing Himself Up. Trump’s Stormy History: The Seven- Year Battle Between the President and the Porn Star.

Police escort suspects in the deaths of 71 refugees found in a truck on an Austrian motorway, in Kecskemet, Hungary , August 29, 2015. The country is also building a fence along its border to stem the influx of migrants . The oldest suspect was a 50- year -old, heavy-set Bulgarian man, while the

The men had been charged with "aggravated murder with particular cruelty" in the year-long trial, which put the spotlight on the plight of migrants who put their lives into the hands of human traffickers.

The victims — 59 men, eight women and four children, including a baby — came from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Having made their way to the Serbian border with Hungary, they were packed into an air-tight poultry refrigerator truck, their cries to stop and open the doors for fresh air ignored. Realizing what had happened, the driver abandoned the refrigerated lorry by the side of a motorway in Austria.

When Austrian police opened the back of the lorry, they found the bodies piled on top of each other.

Investigations showed they had been dead for two days, suffocating shortly after being picked up in Hungary, then a key transit country on the Balkan migrant trail.

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Police escort suspects in the deaths of 71 refugees found in a truck on an Austrian motorway, in Kecskemet, Hungary , August 29, 2015. The country is also building a fence along its border to stem the influx of migrants . The oldest suspect was a 50- year -old, heavy-set Bulgarian man, while the

Kecskemet - Four men accused of involvement in the trafficking of 71 migrants found dead in a truck in Austria, were brought before a The suspects , three Bulgarians and one Afghan, were detained in Hungary later that day. Hundreds of thousands of migrants have arrived in Europe this year .

The group had been part of hundreds of thousands of desperate people fleeing war and misery in the Middle East and elsewhere in 2015, triggering Europe's worst migrant crisis since World War II.

The deaths led a shocked German Chancellor Angela Merkel to announce she would open her country's doors, eventually allowing in more than one million refugees, mostly from Syria.

 'Let them die' 

Hungarian officials said the Budapest-based ring was a professional network with more than 15 vehicles used to transport refugees who were trekking up from Greece along the western Balkans to Europe.

The gang had smuggled more than 1,100 people from Hungary into Austria since February 2015, charging up to 1,500 euros ($1,760) a head.

State prosecutor Gabor Schmidt had asked for life terms for the main four accused, insisting that three should get life without parole under Hungarian law.

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Hungarian police said Friday they arrested four men in connection with the scores of migrants found dead Thursday in a truck in Austria, a discovery that The men, three Bulgarians and one Afghan, are suspected of being part of a clandestine migrant smuggling network, the Hungarian police said.

Four men are detained in Hungary on suspicion of transporting 71 refugees who were found dead in a truck along a motorway in neighboring Austria. Nathan Frandino reports.

The suspects denied knowing that their human cargo was dying, but evidence was produced showing they did.

Hungary built a fence to try and control the flood of hundreds of thousands of migrants coming through the Balkans hoping to get to Germany. © Provided by AFP Hungary built a fence to try and control the flood of hundreds of thousands of migrants coming through the Balkans hoping to get to Germany.

The alleged ringleader, Samsoor Lahoo, a 31-year-old Afghan who had fled his country, told the court in a final statement that he "had not wanted anyone's death."

But police telephone intercepts of calls revealed he had ordered the truck drivers not to open the doors.

"Let them die instead. That's an order," Lahoo allegedly says in one of the calls.

"If they die, let him dump them in a forest in Germany," he adds.

Challenged with this evidence, Lahoo told the court they were simply "thoughtless remarks."

For prosecutor Gabor Schmidt, Lahoo showed only "endless greed" and "frightening indifference" to migrants desperate to get to Europe.

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