The Latest: European police break up migrant-smuggling ring

Full Screen
1 / 16

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Migrants wash themselves at the Vucjak refugee camp outside Bihac, northwestern Bosnia, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019. The European Union's top migration official is warning Bosnian authorities of a likely humanitarian crisis this winter due to appalling conditions in overcrowded migrant camps in the country. (AP Photo/Darko Vojinovic)

BIHAC – The Latest on immigration to Europe (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

The European Union law enforcement agency says police across the continent have concluded a two-year investigation into a “massive” criminal network that was using trucks to smuggle migrants into western Europe.

Europol said Thursday that police in Romania detained four suspected members of the gang, which smuggled nearly 580 people from outside Europe through the Romanian city of Timisoara and then westward.

Numerous migrants have lost their lives in recent years after being crammed into tractor-trailers, without sufficient air or water, for the journey across Europe.

Europol said the investigation was launched by German police last year and also involved authorities in Austria, Greece, Czech Republic, Hungary and Britain.

It said the gang was composed of at least 36 people who earned more than 2 million euros ($2.2 million).