Dozens of Arrests After 69 Albanian Illegals Stow Away on Fishing Boat off English Coast

DOVER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 06: UK Border Force Patrol cutter 'Seeker' patrols the English Channel on September 06, 2020 in Dover, England. Last Wednesday, more than 400 migrants made the journey from France to England by sea, either intercepted by UK border force or arriving on shore in their small …
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

British authorities have arrested 72 people after dozens of Albanian illegals were found on a fishing boat off of the English coast.

The National Crime Agency (FCA), the British equivalent of the FBI, arrested the 69 illegals found hidden beneath the deck of the 100-foot vessel the Syanic, which was intercepted off of the Suffolk county coast, having sailed from the Belgian port of Ostend. Authorities also arrested the ship’s crew, comprised of two Ukrainians and one from the EU member state of Latvia.

Details were released on Thursday, with local media the East Anglian Daily Times reporting the raid took place when UK Border Force cutters the Vigilant and Searcher intercepted the fishing boat late on Tuesday, bringing it ashore in the early hours of Wednesday.

Authorities said it was the combined operation of 250 officers from Essex Police, the NCA, Immigration Enforcement, and UK Border Force, with support from abroad, in a massive show of force on illegal immigration after the country has seen record-breaking illegal boat landings across the English Channel this year.

The 69 Albanians are being investigated on suspicion of illegal entry into the United Kingdom, while the NCA is questioning the Ukrainians and Latvian in relation to facilitating illegal migration.

Reportedly the biggest bust of its kind this year, the incident is unusual as the vast majority of some 8,500 illegals to have landed on British shores did so under their own power in rubber dinghies and other small craft or were intercepted by British authorities during the efforts of crossing the English Channel in such vessels and brought the rest of the way.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said of the arrests: “I’ve been clear that I’ll use every arm of the law to break up the ruthless gangs who facilitate this criminal activity.

“Yesterday’s operation was a big win for our intelligence and law enforcement agencies who have halted a serious illegal enterprise and cut off a source of funding for an organised criminal gang.

“We are unapologetically returning migrants who have no right to stay in the UK to safe countries with flights every week and will do whatever we can to make this route unviable.

“My thanks go to all our operational partners for their role in the important criminal investigation.”

The Home Secretary has been under pressure to get to grips with the large numbers of illegals landing on English shores, with 2020’s figures to date being around seven times the number that landed in the whole of 2019.

This week, Migration Watch UK warned that illegal boat crossings will cost the UK taxpayer around £240 million over the next decade in housing and other benefits, as it proves notoriously difficult to deport bogus asylum seekers.

Breitbart London reported last week on yet another flight scheduled for deportations being near-emptied of returnees. Twenty-eight failed asylum seekers were removed from their flight after filing more last-minute appeals to their deportations, with the help of who Patel’s Home Office branded “activist lawyers”.

Tim Loughton MP, a member of the Home Affairs Select Committee, commented: “It is incomprehensible that we are paying for people to be in the country when they have no case to be here and our hospitality is being abused even further by lawyers using questionable last-minute tactics to take people off planes, adding even more expense with unused flights and further legal wrangles.”

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