Home Immigration News Plans for new ways to beat migrants being smuggled to UK in lorries

Plans for new ways to beat migrants being smuggled to UK in lorries

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The Border Force is to use “next generation fast screening technology” to detect illegal migrants who are now hiding “deeper” in lorries aboard ferries bound for Britain.

The equipment will be capable of scanning up to 250 trucks an hour leaving the busiest ports in Northern France.

In a document inviting high-tech companies to explain how they can provide such technology, the Home Office warns that organised gangs smuggling migrants into the UK are using increasingly sophisticated methods to conceal stowaways inside freight vehicles bound for the Kent coast.

The notice says: “The authority requires a next generation fast screening technological solution to screen between 200 to 250 freight vehicles per hour which is capable of responding to changing patterns on concealment where persons illegally stowed are increasingly hidden deeper within trailer loads.”

Although the document does not explain the ways people are thought to be evading detection, the document raises the possibility that organised criminal gangs are developing methods capable of outsmarting current technology intended to spot stoways.

Lorries are currently searched using ‘passive millimeter wave imaging’ equipment, a system that detects humans hidden in trailers by capturing a digital image from the radiation a body emits.

Border Force officials carry out security checks at so-called “juxtaposed ports” where Britain’s borders have effectively been moved to French soil.

A Freedom of Information request last year revealed that migrants trying to sneak into Britain were being caught at these ‘juxtaposed controls’ every 10 minutes.

The figures showed that more than 56,000 illegal migrants were seized in 2013, equivalent to 153 people being captured each day. They were found either hidden inside trailers or trying to breach security fences to the ports.

Although most are seized at the larger ports like Calais and Dunkirk, gangs have begun using smaller ports in the hope that there are fewer detection systems in place.

Last month, migrants were photographed trying to board a truck at the fishing port of Ouistreham, in Normandy. Increasing numbers of migrants have been spotted camping on the roadside or ditches near the small port.

Meanwhile a few weeks ago police and border officers were called to Portsmouth after as many as 32 men were found hiding in the back of an articulated lorry.

Earlier this year, the British Prime Minister, Theresa May, and French President, Emmanuel Macron, agreed a treaty increasing the UK’s contribution towards preventing migrants in Calais from crossing the Channel.

The Home Office notice adds that the proposed equipment they want to buy will need to function in “harsh sea port environments”.

Source: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/10/06/plans-new-ways-beat-migrants-smuggled-uk-lorries/

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