Spanish police on Wednesday opened an internal investigation against a senior officer in the city of Irun, which borders France, suspected of having set rest days according to the number of migrants arrested, police sources said.
The instruction of this head of the border control brigade, issued Tuesday, was to fix the number of compensatory rest days according to the number of migrants arrested at the end of the week in this border area of the Pyrénées Atlantiques where many illegals try to enter France.
"Two days" for no arrests, "three days" for "one", "four days" for "two" and "five days" for ten arrests, describe documents published and denounced Tuesday by the Jupol police union on Twitter.
Hola 👋🏻 @policia! !️
La prestación del servicio 👮🏻 ♂️ en la modalidad de incidencias, está debidamente regulada.
Pues parece que en #Irún , o no se han actualizado.... o se está "empujando" para aumentar el número de detenidos por EXTRANJERÍA desde la Jefatura de la Brigada pic.twitter.com/FHOlrS7QQB
— Jupol Guipuzcoa (@Jupol_Guipuzcoa) June 6, 2023
The investigation was "canceled a few hours later" but "an investigation was opened" on Wednesday, said a national police source. The internal investigation will be conducted by the General Directorate of the National Police, another police source said.
The NGO Irungo Harrera Sarea, the main support network for migrants in the Spanish Basque Country (north), expressed in a statement its "concern" about "rewarding police officers for chasing migrants".
An important crossing point
The French-Spanish border is regularly the subject of attempts to cross migrants from Africa who pass through Spain, one of the main gateways for illegal immigration to Europe. Since 2019, the France has tightened its controls at this border and closed some crossing points.
According to a report by several NGOs published in early May, at least twelve people died at this border between 1 January 2021 and 31 December 2022, some of whom tried to evade police controls, denounced the Coordination of Actions at Internal Borders (Cafi), which includes Amnesty International and Doctors of the World. In 2022, according to the French authorities, five human trafficking networks were dismantled in the French Basque Country and 144 smugglers were tried.