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Austria: Dozens of Iranian Muslims Faked Conversion to Catholicism So They Could Claim Asylum on Grounds of Religious Persecution
by Cheradenine Zakalwe
The police have discovered a gang that smuggled people out of Iran illegally to the Tirol. To help them get asylum the Muslims were offered courses in the Catholic faith. After that, the smuggled people could de facto no longer be deported.
After months of investigations, the criminal police apprehended 6 men and women, most of whom have confessed. They are Iranian citizens and Austrians of Iranian descent. According to the police, the mastermind is a 36-year-old woman who was found with around 30,000 euros in cash or savings books - she was taken into custody. All of them live in the Tirol.
Since 2011 the organisation illegally smuggled at least 60 Iranian citizens to Austria and helped them get a [favourable] asylum judgement using an "ingenious method", according to Christoph Hundertpfund, deputy director of the regional crime office. A sudden conversion to Christianity enabled the smuggled Iranians to secure permanent legal residence in Austria.
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