26 Aug 2005

New Caledonia police seize two Chinese entering on false passports

9:18 am on 26 August 2005

A tip from Australia's High commission in Suva led to the arrest this week of two Asians in New Caledonia, as they were attempting to enter the French Pacific territory with forged passports.

Local television reported the airport police, who had been informed of their arrival details, arrested the two Chinese individuals.

They were in possession of elaborately forged passports bearing their photographs.

French police based in New Caledonia said this could be part of a wider illegal immigration network that bore every sign of resemblance with the type operated by Chinese triads.

The channels used, involving departure from the South of China, then a passage through Japan, New Caledonia, Australia, Fiji and arrival in Canada, seemed to indicate that the illegal immigration scheme was eventually aiming at North America.

The two purported clients are believed to have paid the equivalent of US$12,000 to buy their passage to Canada.