Austria: Cracking down on benefits abuse by asylum seekers

Austria: Cracking down on benefits abuse by asylum seekers

Via Deutsche Welle:

Austria is cracking down on illegal immigrants and asylum seekers thought to be illegally claiming benefits. Interior Minister Maria Fekter says 500 police officers will be given the task of tracking down those accused of ripping off the state.

The officers are also to receive special training in dealing with foreigners and are to conduct nighttime raids on refugee centers and buildings housing asylum seekers. Neighbors are being asked to tell police about the shopping habits of those seeking asylum.

This article was prepared by the Islam in Europe blog -

Fekter said the aim was to expose those who are ripping off the system.

"Some of them are operating illegal vehicle workshops," Fekter said. "There are some who have registered dozens of vehicles. And so we are investigating the details to see if these people really require aid."

Raids over the past week led to six arrests on charges of illegal residence. Over 100 people were given notice that they did not meet the criteria for state aid.

The minister says that the cost of providing food and shelter for Austria's 19,000 asylum seekers is around 100 million euros ($130 million) a year.


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