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German police conduct raids on suspected people smugglers

BERLIN — German police on Wednesday conducted raids against a group suspected of smuggling about 90 people into the country, making five arrests, authorities said.

More than 20 apartments and offices in Berlin and the eastern state of Saxony-Anhalt were searched, along with three vehicles and a bank safe in the Bavarian town of Hof, police and prosecutors in the German capital said in a joint statement.

Five men were arrested, four of them in Berlin and one in the city of Halle.

The group is suspected of bringing about 90 people, mostly from Turkey and Iraq, to Germany between October 2019 and January this year, with migrants paying up to 10,000 euros ($10,500) to be smuggled by car or truck along the so-called Balkan route.

Nine people believed to be Turkish citizens who were in Germany illegally were discovered in the apartments that police searched on Wednesday.

*This story has not been edited by The Infallible staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.