Swedish official remanded in custody for selling visas

STOCKHOLM (AFP) - A Swedish migration officer on assignment in West Africa was remanded in custody for serious bribery and gross misconduct, a foreign ministry spokesman said Saturday.

The former official is suspected of selling between 70 and 75 visas from the Swedish Embassy in Abuja, Nigeria, and was detained by police in Sweden on Friday, according to media reports.

"The suspect was employed by the Swedish Migration Agency and was on a fixed-term contract with the embassy in Nigeria where the alleged crime took place," said foreign ministry spokesman Gabriel Wernstedt.

"The suspect's contract was terminated after it emerged the person had deviated from the routine for visa services," he said.

The reports did not say whether the visas were fake or were genuine but illegally issued.