• Sweden's news in English

Residence permits for sale on black market

TT/David Landes · 26 Nov 2009, 07:40

Published: 26 Nov 2009 07:40 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

The residence permits consist of the the same sticker, featuring the same seals and watermarks, as the permits issued to people who are granted permanent residency in Sweden, Sveriges Radio (SR) reports.

The stickers are fastened in the visa section of the carrier’s passport, along with the name and picture of the individual.

Anyone who purchases a black market Swedish residence permit must then fasten it in their passport, something which Swedish officials claim can only be done by authorities at the Migration Board (Migrationsverket).

The seller of the black market permits told SR that once purchased, they are sent to Greece, where associates run the stickers through a printing and fastening machine similar to the ones used by the Migration Board.

Several refugees in hiding told SR that it is possible to buy residence permit stickers. An Iraqi man who lives in Jönköping in central Sweden claimed to have purchased two stickers to help family members in Iraq get to Europe in order to seek asylum.

It remains unclear if the residency permit stickers for sale on the black market are authentic or not.

Story continues below…

While the seller claims the stickers he sells are authentic, the Migration Board said it has no evidence that any stickers are missing and no police reports have been filed.

TT/David Landes (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

08:17 November 26, 2009 by Thompsuleme
08:40 November 26, 2009 by karex
So what happens to the person who sold them and the people who bought them?
08:55 November 26, 2009 by peropaco
This is Sweden and the person who bought them continues to enjoy their welfare benefits thanks to my tax contribution. The person who sold them is probably a high ranking official with powerful connections, so basically noone will do anything. Just like when they discovered people associated with Olof Palme were part of a sex ring involving under age kids; NADA.
09:12 November 26, 2009 by dahlin
Anyone who has their PUT knows that MV photograph you and laminate the document into your passport on the spot.

Any black market PUT docs therefore would have to be forgeries imo.
09:26 November 26, 2009 by willpf
I shouldn't worry, any asylum will end up in England anyway.....
09:27 November 26, 2009 by Iraniboy
Sorry but isn't there some sort of central database? I though that when you enter Sweden they check their database rather than trusting that sticker!!!!
09:34 November 26, 2009 by Alma
When you enter EU from an un-EU country, they run the visa sticker against the central database. Hence, the cases that do enter EU due to non-checking should be minimal.
09:38 November 26, 2009 by jose_s
-Iraniboy- I would assume that as well... So every time a fake permit is made a real number is used? T
09:43 November 26, 2009 by Leprechaun .se
Thank you Aima.. but this is still outrageous and worrying. That they have the nerve.. I hate to say it and hopefully it's a temporary feeling but I'd rather see them die.
10:04 November 26, 2009 by Mesost
a bit harsh !
10:16 November 26, 2009 by just a question
Don't worry, they don't want the permit to stay in Sweden, they want it to scape from Sweden. So Swedes, you should be happy cause this means less immigrants.
10:22 November 26, 2009 by uunbeliever
Sverige Sverige över alla!!! Sweden will never be open and multicultural, never.
10:24 November 26, 2009 by booka
I think the problem is, is that other countries can not tell is fake.
10:25 November 26, 2009 by Legolas
I have a PUT and have entered the EU scores of time. In about half of the cases the Immigration Officers (all around the EU) have not even bothered to stamp the passport let alone checking it against a central database.

Looks like it is up to the discretion of the officer to run a check.
10:42 November 26, 2009 by calebian22

My experience is exactly the same.
10:56 November 26, 2009 by skatty
I bought mine on eBay "reapris".
11:12 November 26, 2009 by Twiceshy
Shock! Horror!

No, actually it's pretty much expected. Only a naive person wouldn't think this was happening.
11:46 November 26, 2009 by nut
1- Just having a fake residence permit is not enough.I agree that they always check it against central database. It means that fake residence permit should have verifiable number, person name and picture.

2- Whenever you enter from non EU to EU state ,your passport gets stamped.
11:56 November 26, 2009 by jin.malmo
Will i get a discount if i buy it in bulk :-)
11:58 November 26, 2009 by karex
Well, the seller claims that they are authentic. If this is true, then it must be an inside job and then the person would most likely be in the database as well.

They seem to have the same stickers, watermarks, etc... The only part of the process that this implies is not done is the actual "fastening" to the passport which they send out to do in Greece using a similar machine...

This looks like it's a huge operation.
12:03 November 26, 2009 by Gurkhan
I am thinking if I would be tempted to purchase such a permit... Not to live in Sweden or any other EU countries but to simply be able to travel without visa issues every time I have to attend some conference or seminar... :p
12:09 November 26, 2009 by dtes
i want one!
12:12 November 26, 2009 by just a question
Then other European countries should not validate Swedish passports. A Swedish passport won't be valid to open a bank account, or get a card on the library, or hire internet, or...


what goes around comes around...
12:12 November 26, 2009 by mcg
Don't be naive - the patch is not the only way they track your personal information within the EU (it's just a visual tag) - the new passports have a laminated page at the back, with chip and code - if you pass through a EU frontier (Norway excluded) or hub through Paris or Schipol, etc, they swipe/scan your passport (separate queue for EU citizens) - they can see exactly who has which residence permits.

I just got my new stamp/patch for my renewed 10 year UK passport which has the chip - the patch had to be processed in person to get the photo patch added there-and-then.

Just because someone is offering a 'purportedly genuine' patch does not make it the real McCoy.

This surely cannot be classed as a news story.
12:17 November 26, 2009 by Emmi
Dont think that would be a real one...
13:06 November 26, 2009 by summer
i don't believe this, i think sweden is one of the country with strong database. i think its fake and those guys or someone with these fake stickers will be caught one day.
15:44 November 26, 2009 by yamanfanna
at "just a question"

Dude, what a stupid dumpass you are.. they don't stick fake visas to Swedish passports

they stick it to non-swedish and non-EU passports. If I have a Swedish passport,

I dont need any visa to travel around Europe, and I can live anywhere in EU. in fact

if I had a swedish passport and its aforementioned benefits, I would have gotten the hell outta this country ASAP!!
16:35 November 26, 2009 by just a question
Yes, I'm a stupid European dumpass that doesn't need any fake passport to get into or out of my Eurpean country but see how an European passport won't do in Sweden.
17:25 November 26, 2009 by benomax
I doubt if this issue about residential permit is real, my reasons being that if any one holds a residential permit legally, the security system all over Europe records it to be genuine, except security protocols are not observed at the airports. When someone holds a fake permit, the computer should detect immediately.

I guess the story is fabricated to get people's opinion or make people talk about something new.
22:28 November 26, 2009 by determined
A person deserves a pat if he/she manages to make it by dogding the advanced state-of-the arts tech like RFID and distributed databases.
12:56 November 27, 2009 by jonathanjames61
Every one should listern to this,anything can happen,its not new,even some european embassy sell Visa,student visa,permit,etc in African.I have enough evidence to proof this,who care to investigate,I am not supprise at this,The immigration dept never give permit to those that will be usefull to the swedish society,so selling some stickers will not be something new,this guys know too much about people paying 10,000 to 18,000 to get here,so buying for 2000 will only reduce the profit of human traffickers.hahahahahah
13:42 November 27, 2009 by Trumpess
The passport and immigration services could look at adopting 2D barcodes, which allow the issuer to include encrypted information as an added security feature. 2D barcodes are becoming very popular in healthcare and pharmaceutical companies, where the trade in counterfeit drugs is becoming an increasing issue, and danger to public health.
14:15 November 27, 2009 by Beynch
It is my opinion that the law should be strengthened, so that those who get caught with false visas as described here, get permanently barred from entry into Sweden, "family reunification" or not. I also agree with many of the comments above, in that technology exists to enhance the prevention of falsifications.
16:09 November 27, 2009 by PerKurowski
This is indeed worrying. I mean why do they have to outsource the "fastening" part to Greece? Can't they do it in Sweden? How much added value for Sweden is lost doing that?
21:29 November 27, 2009 by Nemesis
@ Beynch

I am in agreement with you. That does not happen often:)

3D holographic covering over the picture and barcode front, edge and back, will defeat most counterfeiters. Next step is printing process's and other methods to turn counterfieting into a nightmare.
00:48 November 28, 2009 by Baned

That actually looks like my PUT! Mine is not laminated at all.

If they're just selling stickers and printing, embossing it, hoping no one will actually check if the permit number is valid, then its pretty low-tech! There was a story last year about a guy that hacked into the chips of passports changing the image and info contained in it so when its read at the airport, the fake passport matches the person who stole it perfectly. Now that was scary!!!

But those were American passports and the guy did it to prove a point and handed in his work to the government. Even if there are a few lurking out there, US customs are scary.
Today's headlines
Sweden wants emission-free cars in EU by 2030
Photo: Jessica Gow/ TT

Sweden's environment minister on Saturday urged the European Union to ban petrol and diesel-powered vehicles from 2030.

Hundreds protest Swedish asylum laws
Around 1,000 people protested in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Persson/ TT

Hundreds of people on Saturday demonstrated in Stockholm and in many other parts of the country to protest Sweden’s tough new laws on asylum-seekers.

Dylan removes Nobel-mention from website
The American musician has more or less responded to the news with silence. Photo: Per Wahlberg

American singer-song writer Bob Dylan has removed any mention of him being named one of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates on his official website.

Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Watch this amazing footage of Sweden’s landscapes
A still from the aerial footage of Sweden. Photo: Nate Summer-Cook

The spectacular drone footage captures both Sweden's south and the opposite extreme, thousands of kilometres north.

Sweden could be allowed to keep border controls: EU
Police ID checks at Hyllie station in southern Sweden. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Sweden could be allowed to keep ID controls on its border with Denmark beyond the current end date of November, following discussions among EU leaders in Brussels last night.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden's 'a-kassa'
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
People-watching: October 12th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available