Two men held over fake EU passport

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Two Congolese, aged 39 and 33, were arrested at Larnaca airport after evidence emerged that one was travelling with a fake EU passport provided by the other.

On Monday, the two men were remanded in police custody for four days by a Larnaca district court.

One is facing charges of assisting the illegal entry of a third-country national into the Republic, and the other for circulating a fake document.

Police told the Financial Mirror the two men arrived at Larnaca airport on Sunday to travel to a European destination.

Both men are from the Congo, with the 39-year-old travelling with a valid French passport.

The 33-year-old man was found carrying another EU passport, which authorities said did not belong to him, while a subsequent luggage check, a fake EU identity card was found.

Upon questioning, the 33-year-old admitted he bought the passport for €400 and identity card from the 39-year-old.

But the 39-year-old had already departed from Cyprus.

However, the plane carrying him returned to Larnaca airport; following complaints from stewards, he had caused a commotion on board.

“He had not complied with instructions given on the plane, and the pilot deemed it necessary to disembark the passenger.

“Authorities had nothing to do with the plane returning to Larnaca,” said the police officer.

Upon the forced landing of the aircraft, airport security removed the 39-year-old and handed him to authorities; it then became clear he was the suspect who allegedly supplied the fake passport to the man arrested earlier.