Greek police said they believe a 62-year-old man arrested in Thessaloniki on Sunday along with another two suspects is the leader of a ring of human traffickers authorities said are to blame for the death in June 2012 of two migrants in a hidden compartment on a tour bus found in Italy that had sailed from Greece.
Working with information from the Italian police and Europol, local officials on Sept. 8 made three arrests and opened files on another 30 suspects believed to be part of a large operation smuggling undocumented migrants into Italy from Greece.
The Italian police’s information came from two members of the organization – aged 40 and 44 – who were arrested last year when two of 17 migrants they were carrying in a hidden compartment on a tour bus into Italy from Greece died en route of asphyxiation.
According to the Greek police, the organization, which is believed to have been led by the main suspect, used a modified tour bus to smuggle migrants into Italy under the guise of a tourist excursion.
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