Report: Thousands of refugees lied about their identity

Multicultural Crowd (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/mattbuck)Multicultural Crowd (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/mattbuck)

Thousands of people who received a residency permit in the Netherlands after the general amnesty in 2007, lied about their identities. This was often done so that they can qualify for the amnesty, for example, because only a certain age group fell under the amnesty.

Sources confirmed this to RTL Nieuws. The 2007 amnesty allowed about 28 thousand people living in the Netherlands illegally to get a residence permit.

Lying about their identity to get a permit is now causing problems for some people. In naturalization you need a birth certificate from your country of origin, and for some the date on the certificate does not match the date specified in the Netherlands. Some also have trouble while trying to bring their family over, wit the date of birth in the Netherlands not matching that on the passports of their wife and children.

According to RTL, some of these people are now trying to get their true identity registered in the Netherlands. Documents in the hands of the news agency shows that some municipalities are cooperating. A number of people have also gone to court to try and get their details changes, but in all cases the court rejected such requests.

RTL spoke to a lawyer, Sett, who represents a number of the 1,800 Chinese people who were given amnesty in 2007. He estimates that "80 maybe 90 percent" lied about their identity, but not for political reasons. "They just want to stay hear, left or right, and that's just for economic reasons." he said.

The Ministry of Security and Justice told the news agency that a fraud hotline was established in 2012 for such cases. Since then 32 under the general amnesty were investigated, but none of their residence permits were revoked. The Ministry further said that last year 50 people who fell under the general amnesty had their residence permits revoked, four cases involved people who committed fraud with their identity.