United Kingdom

Two arrested after they were caught in car with five 'illegal immigrants' hours after arriving in UK

Two suspected people smugglers have been arrested after they were caught in a car with five migrants believed to have arrived in the UK just hours earlier.

The pair, who are both Vietnamese men, were held in Deptford, south-east London, yesterday by National Crime Agency (NCA) officers investigating an organised crime group.

They have since been released under investigation. 

Four men and a woman, also Vietnamese, who were in the same car have been arrested on suspicion of entering the UK illegally.

One of the men was also arrested and charged with drug-smuggling offences after a kilo of heroin was also found, while searches in Deptford and nearby Woolwich recovered wraps of the Class A drug.

Hoang Ngoc Troung, 49, appeared at Bromley Magistrates today where he was remanded in custody until his next court appearance at Woolwich Crown Court on January 6. 

The NCA said the migrants had been smuggled into the country just hours earlier.

Two suspected people smugglers have been arrested after they were caught in a car with five migrants believed to have arrived in the UK just hours earlier

NCA branch commander Matt Rivers said: 'People smugglers are ruthless and exploitative, treating migrants as a commodity which they move from country to country for profit.

'Tackling them is a priority for the NCA, and this is bringing operational results in the form of arrests and prosecutions.

'The NCA is targeting and disrupting crime groups at every step of the route, in source countries, in transit, near the UK border in France and Belgium, and - as in this case - those operating inside the UK itself.'

The operation was part of a probe into an organised crime group suspected of smuggling Vietnamese nationals into the UK.

Two people were arrested in London in October and a man was held in Manchester last month, with around £30,000 in cash seized. All three were later released under investigation.

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