Peru plans to deport about 50 Venezuelan migrants for concealing that they had criminal records, the interior ministry said on Monday, in the first large expulsion since hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans fled to the Andean nation last year to escape their country’s crippling economic crisis.
The migrants were detained in different districts of the capital Lima early on Monday and will be flown to Venezuela later in the day, the ministry said in a statement.
The ministry accused the migrants of providing false sworn declarations in their residency applications stating they had no criminal record, a violation of Peru’s migration law that is punishable with deportation.
Some 3 million Venezuelans have left their homeland since 2015, seeking to escape the economic crisis under Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro that has deprived many of basic foods and medicine, according to a U.N. estimate. Another 2 million are expected to emigrate this year.
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