Border Police arrest dozens of Palestinian would-be migrants.
(photo credit: ISRAEL POLICE)
Border Police units operating in the Modi’in region of central Israel were astonished on Friday to discover an attempt to illegally smuggle dozens of Palestinians into the country.
According to a police statement, 52 Palestinians were taken into custody after they were discovered crammed into vans near the town of Latrun.
Police grew suspicious of one particular vehicle - an Iveco van - driving along Route 3, as one of the rear tires ceased functioning due to the excessive weight of the inner contents.
When police pulled the van over, they found 26 undocumented Palestinians crammed into the back.
The van was en route to central Israel when it was stopped. Nearby, law enforcement noticed a similar-looking vehicle and ordered the driver to pull over. After realizing that authorities were about to arrest him, the driver abandoned the van and fled the scene.
Police found 24 more Palestinians bunched together in the back of the second van.
Border Police say that these kinds of operations are routine, as Palestinians seeking work try to illegally enter Israel proper on a near daily basis.
All of those apprehended were brought to a Modi’in police station and questioned. Five of the undocumented Palestinians were arrested, as was one of the drivers. In addition, four other Palestinians who have been involved in “serious security-related crimes” were taken into custody.
All of those detained will be brought before a court.