France grounds flight carrying 303 Indians for suspected human trafficking

France has grounded an aircraft en route to South America’s Nicaragua from Dubai with 300 Indian-origin passengers over suspected “human trafficking”, the Indian Embassy in Paris said on Friday (December 22, 2023).

France grounds flight carrying 303 Indians over suspected human trafficking. Photo Courtesy:  Official website of Legend Airlines

The Legend Airlines flight was detained in France following an anonymous tipoff. The plane was due for refuelling in France.

Later in the evening, India said it had been granted consular access to those onboard.

A team from the embassy reached the passengers, the Indian Embassy in France said in a post on X.

“French authorities informed us of a plane with 303 people, mostly of Indian origin, from Dubai to Nicaragua detained on a technical halt at a French airport. Embassy team has reached and obtained consular access. We are investigating the situation, also ensuring the wel-lbeing of the passengers,” the post said.

According to reports, the aircraft was carrying passengers who are “likely to be victims of human trafficking”.

France’s anti-organised crime unit JUNALCO is investigating the case, said reports.