Sunday, February 12, 2017

Swedish television reporter who documented Syrian boy’s journey to freedom convicted of human smuggling

 Three employees with Swedish broadcaster SVT have been sentenced to community work after being convicted of human smuggling for bringing a 15-year Syrian boy to Sweden during the 2015 migrant influx that swept across Europe.
The Malmo’s District Court said Thursday it was “obvious the SVT team helped for purely humanitarian reasons.”
Reporter Fredrik Onnevall, his cameraman and interpreter were making a documentary on the migrants when they met an unaccompanied minor in Greece who wanted to go to Sweden. They wanted to document his trip by car, ferry and train.
According to CNN, the teen pleaded with Onnevall to leave Greece because he was desperate to be reunited with family he had in Sweden. He has since gained permanent residence in Sweden.
Before the court, Onnevall admitted paying for a car rental and knowing the boy had false papers. In Sweden, the then-15-year-old boy was granted permanent asylum.
It was not immediately clear whether the ruling would be appealed. (AP)

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