Age verification tests carried out on migrants who claim to be children have found that 76% of them are actually aged 18 or over.
Swedish migration authorities released the findings of a wave of tests carried out on new arrivals to the Scandinavian country who claimed to be underage, but raised the suspicions of authorities.
Medical examinations, which included analysis of migrants’ teeth and knee joints, found that the majority of those claiming to be children actually were not.
Sweden’s Rättsmedicinalverket (forensic medical agency) has so far tested 581 migrants, and found evidence that 442 of them were 18 or older.
The tests were only carried out on “children” who migration authorities thought could be lying – those who were clearly younger than 18 were not put through the procedure.
There are around 3,700 suspicious cases still due to be assessed by the medical experts, according to the Swedish TT news agency.
If the proportions from the previous tests hold true, a total of around 2,800 alleged child migrants will have been found not to actually be children, around 7.5% of all applicants.
Correctly assessing the ages of people claiming asylum in Europe as part of the ongoing migrant crisis has proved a contentious issue across the continent.
Photographs of refugees brought to the United Kingdom appearing to show grown men rather than teens or children prompted widespread criticism of the assessment process.
Some politicians argued for dental checks to be introduced in the UK – but were shouted down by officials who said they were “inappropriate and unethical”.