Criminal Gang Providing Fake Documentation To Foreigners In Irregular Situations Broken Up In Gran Canaria

Image of items seized during police operation on Gran Canaria.

Image of items seized during police operation on Gran Canaria. Credit: Guardia Civil/ Policia Nacional

A criminal organisation based on the Canary Island of Gran Canaria has been broken up in a joint operation between the Guardia Civil and the National Police.

As reported in a statement from the Guardia Civil this Tuesday, June 20, the group specialised in providing fake documentation to migrants in irregular situations. This subsequently allowed them to travel from the Canary Islands to the mainland or other countries in the European Union.

Those now detained falsified official documents issued by public organisations and in exchange for a specific payment they delivered them to the migrants to enable them to make their exit from the archipelago.

Sometimes the gang even went so far as to organise the trips and provide accommodation for these people while they prepared the documentation. They are believed to have organised more than 60 such departures from Gran Canaria.

Three people were arrested in the city of Las Palmas, who have been charged with, among others, the crimes of belonging to a criminal organisation, against the rights of foreign citizens, and forgery of documents.

The organisation recruited migrants of sub-Saharan origin, among whom were numerous underage individuals. This was achieved thanks to the contacts that one of the detainees had in the juvenile centres on the island of Gran Canaria.

Subsequently, they were detained in a place prior to their trip, while the group prepared the false documentation and all the necessary infrastructure for their departure.

During the investigation, numerous people were arrested at different Spanish airports after trying to travel with false documents. One such case was that of a child under eleven years of age, a native of the Ivory Coast.

Her disappearance had been reported by a juvenile centre on the island of Fuerteventura. She was subsequently intercepted at Gran Canaria airport just moments before boarding a flight to Barcelona.

A registered address was searched during the operation, in which the police seized numerous falsified documentation, materials used to facilitate this crime, passports belonging to third parties, money, and electronic devices, among other effects.

The detainees were brought before the courts, which ordered the immediate imprisonment of two of them.

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Written by

Chris King

Originally from Wales, Chris spent years on the Costa del Sol before moving to the Algarve where he is a web reporter for The Euro Weekly News covering international and Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at