VILNIUS, Mar 12, BNS – Lithuanian border guards have detained eight Tadjiks who tried to illegally leave Lithuania after asking for asylum, the State Border Guard Service said on Tuesday.

It said a Tadjik national having a residence permit in Poland was taking his fellow nationals in an Opel Zafira with Polish car plates and was stopped close to the Lithuanian-Polish border on Saturday.

The driver, 38, told the border guards he was taking a couple and their six children. They all had certificates issued by the Lithuanian Foreigners' Registration Center after asking for asylum in Lithuania in February. They were temporarily housed at the center in Pabrade.

Asylum seekers have the right to leave the center's premises for 24 hours and move within the territory of Lithuania.

The SBGS has launched a ptr-trial investigation into illegal cross-border transportation of people. A court sanctioned the driver's arrest for a month. He's facing a fine, arrest or a prison term of up to 6 years. The family was returned to the Foreigners' Registration Center.

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