By Gangsters Inc. Editors
Iraqi national Barzan Kamal Majeed, nicknamed “Scorpion” after his WhatsApp avatar, was sentenced to 10 years in prison in October for people smuggling offences at a court in Bruges, Belgium. He himself wasn’t present as he was still on the run.
The 36-year-old Iraqi, formerly of Nottingham, England, was also fined €968,000 euros.
Authorities are working hard to track down Majeed, who they see as the head of an organized crime group that attempted to smuggle more than 100 migrants to the United Kingdom in small boats and lorries.
A warrant has been issued for his arrest, and investigators in Europe are now appealing for information regarding his whereabouts.
From Nottingham to Kurdistan
Majeed moved to the United Kingdom in 2013 and lived in the Hucknall area of Nottingham, where he is understood to still have connections. He was deported from Britain in 2015 to the Kurdistan region of Northern Iraq.
The Belgian prosecution followed a joint investigation involving British, Belgian, Dutch and French law enforcement into 31 separate attempts to smuggle migrants into the United Kingdom between July 2018 and November 2019 using small boats, lorries and shipping containers.
Many of the migrants encountered had Majeed’s number stored in their mobile phone under the name “Scorpion”.
The investigation had already resulted in the UK conviction of fellow crime group member Nzar Jabar Mohamad, 35, last year. He was jailed for 10 years at Hull Crown Court in October 2021 after admitting attempting to bring 21 migrants to the UK using lorries and small boats. He also boasted of smuggling hundreds of women using the same method.
A further 23 people were charged by the Belgian authorities this year, including three who were arrested in the UK by the National Crime Agency and extradited to Belgium.
Seventeen were convicted and jailed for a total of 32 years during the same hearing as Majeed’s. Six were given suspended prison sentences. Mohamad was also given an additional two-year sentence and fined €272,000 euros by the Belgian court.
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