Essex Men Jailed For Conspiring To Smuggle Immigrants Into UK
31 January 2019, 12:58 | Updated: 31 January 2019, 13:03
Two men from Essex who conspired to smuggle four migrants - including a pregnant woman and young child - into the UK have been jailed.
38 year old Bradley Turner from Canvey Island and John Sheppard who is 67 and of Saffron Walden, pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiring to facilitate a breach of immigration law and have each been handed four and a half years in prison.
They were arrested after being found in a fishing boat carrying Iraqi nationals off the coast of Kent in August.
Sentencing Judge Simon James said the pair had sought to profit from "the desperation of others" and "any attempt to circumvent the border controls has a capacity to undermine the nation's security".
He said the migrants would have been seeking "a new life for themselves" but the prevalence of illegal immigration was a "matter of considerable and understandable public concern, placing as it does an increasing burden on the state".
He added: "The message needs to go out that trafficking people is not an easy way to make money but a serious and exploitative offence".