Criminal investigation relating to berry business continues – police and Border Guard suspect aggravated human trafficking
The police and the Border Guard have investigated a large case of suspected human trafficking of Thai wild berry pickers in Finland. Two persons have been remanded and one has been arrested.
The NBI, the Border Guard and the Helsinki and Lapland Police Departments conduct a criminal investigation into a major case of human trafficking. It is suspected that Thai berry pickers working in Finland have become victims of human trafficking in 2020 – 2022. The criminal investigation focuses on a berry company in Northern Finland and a Thai company recruiting berry pickers to Finland.
Two persons are still in pre-trial detention. They are suspected of aggravated trafficking in human beings instead of the basic form of trafficking. The police have also arrested one person suspected of aggravated acceptance of a bribe and aggravated abuse of public office.
– We suspect that significant benefits have been gained and official processes related to the berry picking business facilitated with bribes, says Detective Superintendent Teemu Mäntyniemi of the NBI.
The investigation has involved extensive international cooperation, including with the Thai and Swedish authorities. The criminal investigation is still underway, and the police release information about it when possible.