Telford man arrested in people smuggling investigation
A man from Telford has been arrested by immigration officers in connection with a people smuggling investigation.
The man, 39, was arrested in Wealdstone, Woodside, Telford, as part of raids carried out across the West Midlands at 6am today.
Officers from Immigration Enforcement’s Criminal and Financial Investigation (CFI) team executed warrants at six addresses – two in Birmingham, two in Leicester and one in both Coventry and Telford.
The arrests relate to an investigation into attempts to smuggle people into the UK hidden in the back of vans.
A statement from the Home Office said: "Between June and September, 2018, Border Force officers at the juxtaposed controls in northern France prevented three such attempts involving a total of 18 Iraqi nationals. The Iraqis were referred to the Police Aux Frontieres for their cases to be dealt with."
Minister for Immigration Compliance and the Courts Chris Philp said: “These arrests were made as part of an ongoing investigation into a suspected organised crime group involved in people smuggling. We believe that the arrests made today will have significantly disrupted the group’s activities.
“People smuggling is an abhorrent crime that treats migrants as human cargo to be profited from. We are determined to do all we can to dismantle the criminal networks involved in illegal immigration.”
The statement added that all those encountered were arrested on suspicion of conspiracy to assist unlawful immigration.
They included a 37-year-old man at Harold Street, Leicester; a 42-year-old man at Althorp Close, Leicester; a 50-year-old man at Wiseman Grove, Birmingham and the 39-year-old man at Wealdstone in Telford.
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