London: A major visa scam has been unearthed by a leading UK based tabloid, involving a ring of corrupt Pakistani officials and politicians which could give potential terrorists the chance to enter Britain with Pakistan’s Olympic team.
The investigation was centred on the Lahore-based Dream Land travel agency prosecuted nine years ago for human trafficking.
“We infiltrated a crime ring offering false passports, visas and access to London 2012 as bogus support staff. We uncovered a ring of corrupt Pakistani officials and travel staff conspiring with a prominent politician to bypass stringent security,” The Sun, which exposed this scam, said.
The paper’s undercover investigator was first provided with a genuine Pakistani passport in a false name. Then leading Lahore politician Abid Chodhary spelled out how for around 7,000 pounds he could get our man a two-month visa and smuggle him into London 2012 as part of Pakistan’s Olympic squad.
The Sun secretly filmed Chodhary as he explained how easy it was to get into the Olympic Village by masquerading as a member of the athletes support team.
“We were told we could even take part in Friday’s opening ceremony. At no point did any of the corrupt officials question our reason for wanting to sneak into Britain.
“An investigation was under way yesterday after we alerted MI6, the Home Office, the UK Border Agency and the British High Commission in Pakistan’s capital Islamabad,” the paper reports.
One intelligence operative said: The paper has unearthed a sophisticated network of corruption.