A criminal group that exploited undocumented migrant workers, mainly from Morocco, in the agricultural sector has been broken up.

The group is accused of selling false documents to migrants for up to €3,000 and housing them in inhumane conditions.

Police swooped on the criminal ring in a dramatic raid in Malaga province on Thursday morning.

“Officers arrested 43 people in the southern province of Malaga suspected of belonging to the ring,” the Policia Nacional said in a statement. 

A video released by police showed a cramped room with decrepit walls and a small single bed that was used to house migrants.

At least seven agricultural firms are believed to have hired the exploited workers through the scheme, which was dedicated to the ‘labour exploitation’ of Moroccan nationals, according to the statement. 

Spain is a key gateway into Europe for illegal migration from Africa, although the number of arrivals decreased last year.

Figures put the number of entries into Spain without permission last year at 31,219, mainly from boats coming from Morocco.

However, this figure represents a drop of 25% on 2021, according to interior ministry numbers.

The UN’s International Labour Organization (ILO) has noted that migrant workers are at a higher risk of forced labour than other workers. 

“The forced labour prevalence of adult migrant workers is more than three times higher than that of adult non-migrant workers,” the ILO stated in a September 2022 report.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.