An entrepreneur in a small village near the Hungarian-Serbian border deceived unmarried young women living in poor conditions in the nearby villages. He offered them roughly 480 Euros for marrying Serbian men so that they receive residence permit in Germany. The deceived women did not worry about it, however, by now, all of them have been charged. The frauds happened in 2013 and 2014, but the hearings started this February, Abcug.hu reports.
One of the women recalled the wedding:
The registrar told us that, from that moment on, we had been a married couple, then we kissed each other on the cheek, went to a restaurant in a Serbian village, and then we went back home to Hungary. That was all.
According to Abcug.hu, all women married to unknown men, with whom they were not able to communicate, because neither of them spoke the others’ mother tongue. Only one thing motivated these women, and that is the money which was offered to them by a Serbian man called Bebe, and his fellows.
The Serbian man had a garage in the village. At the beginning, he organized the weddings with his partner, later also the locals assisted. They sought for unmarried women living in poor conditions in the village and in the surroundings and promised them about 440-480 Euros in two tranches: First, the women had to travel to Serbia, marry an unknown Serbian man, and then they had to travel to Germany or Austria with them to help them receive the residence permission. According to one of the defendants, Bebe received roughly 10,000 Euros, from which he paid the brides off, and also paid his assistants, the fuel, and sometimes the dinner.
All the defendants claimed at the court that they believed that what they had been doing was all legal. One of the women had to discontinue university, because she has to nurse one of her family members; another woman raises her six children alone. In a small settlement like this, it is easy to find people in bad financial circumstances, so fraudsters could target them, what is more, later, women voluntarily came up to them with the intention to marry for money, Abcug.hu notes.
Those who were hesitating or were thinking about whether it was legal or not were convinced by Bebe and his fellows and even by an attorney in the village that they had nothing to fear, it is all legal. Authorities were going to know nothing about those marriages. Bebe and his fellows did not inform the women how to dissolve the marriages.
One of the defendants, a waitress, told Abcug.hu that she was not having a job for a longer time. Her boyfriend, also unemployed, worked at Bebe’s garage sometimes, where the woman used to accompany him when she was bored. One day she was offered to get marry to a Serbian man for money. The woman immediately accepted the offer.
There was no ring…I had to kiss the bridegroom on the cheek. The man took some photos about us, and then we went to have a lunch. At the end, I got my 240 Euros.
Her ex-partner was the chauffeur who used to transport the women to Serbia. He told Abcug.hu that he had been told that the women had gone working. Only after some journeys he got to know why the women go to Serbia. He immediately quitted the business. The reason why he “worked” for Bebe was that he owed Bebe the price of a car.
“I did it because I wanted to work off the price of the car. If I had known it was a crime, I would have not done it.”