Russian FSB busts underground printing presses


Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) has apprehended a criminal group engaged in legalizing foreigners in Russia and uncovered five underground printing houses for making documents for them, the FSB press office told TASS on Monday.

“The personnel of the FSB’s border control group at Domodedovo international airport and the Investigative Committee’s Moscow Main Investigative Department with the law enforcement support of the National Guard foiled the activity of an organized criminal group engaged in legalizing foreign citizens on Russian territory. Five underground printing houses were uncovered on the territory of Moscow and the Moscow Region,” the FSB press office said.

The FSB operatives seized over 50 seals and stamps of state and commercial organizations and healthcare institutions, more than 2,500 blank forms of passports, driver licenses, migration cards and patents for labor activity and other documents, the FSB said.

As spokeswoman for the Investigative Committee’s Moscow Main Investigative Department Yulia Ivanova told reporters, the security and law enforcement operatives carried out searches at 11 places. Blank forms of migration documents, passports of foreign citizens with the signs of forgery and seal imprints of crossing the Russian state border were seized from the suspects, she said.

“Sixteen individuals were taken to the regional subdivision to check their complicity in committing this crime. Five of them were detained and indicted. They were remanded into custody and banned from carrying out specific actions as a measure of restraint,” the spokeswoman said.

A criminal case has been opened under Part 2, Article 322.1 (“Organization of Illegal Migration by an Organized Group”) and Parts 1 and 2 of Article 327 of Russia’s Criminal Code (“Forging, Making and Selling Forged Documents and Seals”), she said.

“According to the investigators’ data, pursuing the goals of illegal personal enrichment, the accomplices united and distributed roles among themselves in advance and with the intent of organizing illegal migration, in 2020 they engaged in the activity of forging passports, migration cards, blank forms of notifications and other documents allowing foreign citizens to illegally stay on Russian territory,” the spokeswoman said.

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