Two arrested in Nottingham over FOILED attempt to smuggle Albanians to UK by speedboat

The arrests follow an operation last month.
The arrests follow an operation last month.

Twelve Albanian nationals were detained, alongside two men from Basingstoke in Hampshire

Published

Two people have been arrested in Nottingham on suspicion of involvement in a foiled attempt to smuggle Albanian migrants to the UK by speedboat.

The arrests follow an operation last month, where Belgian police prevented a high-powered rigid hulled inflatable boat leaving the coast near the town of Nieuwpoort in Flanders.

Twelve Albanian nationals were detained, alongside two men from Basingstoke in Hampshire.

They were arrested by Belgian authorities for alleged people smuggling offences.

Officers from the UK's National Crime Agency also detained a third suspected member of the crime group in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.NCA officers have now arrested to Albanian men after a raid on a property in Sherwood, Nottingham.

The two men, aged 48 and 44 have been detained on suspicion of assisting unlawful immigration. They remain in custody and are being questioned.

NCA Branch Commander Colin Williams said: “Our investigation is focused on individuals suspected of involvement in the October attempt to circumvent UK border controls using a high-powered boat.

“Tackling people smugglers is a priority for the NCA, and we are doing all we can to target the networks impacting on the UK, whether they are operating on our shores or overseas.”

The investigation saw the National Crime Agency working jointly with Belgian Federal Police, Border Force and Immigration Enforcement.

The NCA has warned previously that organised crime groups are looking at finding new ways of circumventing border controls, by using bigger and faster boats, as well landing migrants further up the UK coastline.