Four boats carrying 72 illegal migrants were brought to Dover on Sunday after the UK Border force intercepted them in the English Channel.
The first two boats which carried 22 men and eight women claiming to be Iraqi, Iranian, and Syrian nationals was intercepted by the Border Force and partnering agencies at 6:30 am. Three hours later, another RHIB (rigid-hulled inflatable boat) carrying 13 men who claimed to be from Iraq and Iran was intercepted, Kent Online reports.
Shortly after, the fourth boat which carried 25 men and four women who presented themselves as Iranian and Iraqi was intercepted as it approached a beach in Hastings.
All of illegal migrants were then taken to Dover where their medical conditions were assessed by healthcare personnel.
The news comes after a total of 116 illegal migrants were intercepted while crossing the Channel on Tuesday and Wednesday of last week.
In response to the illegal crossings, Tony Eastaugh, the Home Office’s director for crime and enforcement, said: “Those facilitating these illegal crossings and the criminals behind this trade are breaking the law. If someone facilitates an illegal crossing, we will enforce the law and seek to return those with no right to be in the UK.”
“We are working around the clock each day with the NCA (National Crime Agency) and French law enforcement agencies to arrest and dismantle organised crime gangs in France,” Eastaugh said, adding that extra police patrols were being deployed to French beaches.