People smugglers and others have been selling asylum seekers “fake stories” in order to better improve their chances of getting a positive asylum claim in Europe.
A new report claims that asylum seekers from Iran have been buying cover stories from at least three separate websites to fool Swedish authorities into thinking they were being politically oppressed by the Iranian regime Sveriges Radio reports.
The Swedish broadcaster spoke to a man who they named Hamid who claimed that the website had sold him a package that included a regime-critical blog that had been up for several years in order to improve his asylum chances.
According to Hamid, the ploy worked as he was granted residency by the Swedish government after presenting them with his “cover story.”
“I was able to buy a regime-critical blog that has been active for several years. I had to take it over and then they helped me to update it as if it had always been mine,” he said.
The cost of a full package backstory costs around £5,350 according to those behind the websites. Reporters from the radio programme Ekot spoke to an individual about buying not only cover stories but visas to Sweden as well.
The site did not only focus on getting migrants asylum status in Sweden but also promised a “100 percent” success rate in getting approved claims in Germany, the UK, and the United States.
When asked if they examine suspected reports of fake cover stories among asylum seekers, the Swedish Migration Board said the matter was for the police and admitted they do not follow up on such cases and have no statistics relating to the prevalence of the practice.
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) December 20, 2015
Asylum seekers coming into Western European countries with false documents and passports is a growing problem in countries like Germany where the number of migrants caught with fake documents has increased by 70 percent in the second quarter of 2017.
While Germany is now clamping down on migrants with fake documents, a report from last year showed that they completely ignored migrants with fake passports during the height of the migrant crisis in 2015 and let them in regardless.