Great Britain

Migrants lured across Channel with promises of Covid jabs and plush hotel stays

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SMUGGLERS' PROMISES

MIGRANTS are being lured into crossing the Channel with promises of Covid jabs and stays in plush hotels.

Smugglers are doubling prices for perilous boat trips after promising they are one-way tickets to a life of luxury and safety.

The Home Office has block-booked hotels like the Kingston Lodge Hotel in Kingston upon Thames, South West London, to put up migrants

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The Home Office has block-booked hotels like the Kingston Lodge Hotel in Kingston upon Thames, South West London, to put up migrantsCredit: Dan Charity / The Sun

One migrant said: “They told me I’d be taken to a hotel and live there. I was even shown pictures. I was told I’d be jabbed too because Britain had so much of the vaccine they could afford to give it away.”

On Thursday The Sun revealed the Home Office has block-booked hotels to put up migrants.

One — Kingston Lodge Hotel in Kingston upon Thames, South West London — had to cancel a wedding reception to make room.

And Britain does offer the vaccine to anyone regardless of immigration status, with no need to show papers.

One recent arrival from Eritrea said: “I paid £500 for the crossing. It was my entire savings but it was worth every penny. My bedroom is wonderful and the food is very good.

“One morning I was called to queue in a conference room where nurses were giving the jab. I hope to be double-vaccinated by the end of August.”

Matt Friedman, who has spent nearly 30 years investigating trafficking, said: “Covid has created a dangerous new market-place in the business of human suffering.”

Priti Patel gives evidence on migrant crossings as numbers surpass 2020 records

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