- West Country (W)
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Avon and Somerset police have released a 50-year-old man on bail following his arrest in connection with a lorry carrying 15 people near Ilminster.
ITV News understands he is the driver of the lorry.
A force spokesman said: "A 50-year-old man has been released on police bail pending further enquiries. He was arrested yesterday on suspicion of facilitating entry of people into the UK. 15 people who were found in the back of a lorry remain in a rest centre."
Volunteers from the British Red Cross are supporting a group of 15 people found on board a lorry at a service station near Ilminster, Somerset, yesterday.
Having been checked over by paramedics at the scene, they were then taken to Long Sutton Village Hall, Somerset, by a team of four Red Cross emergency response volunteers trained in providing practical and emotional support. The group were provided with beds, bedding and other essential supplies such as hygiene kits.
Irregular migration to the UK "is increasing", an anti-trafficking expert said.
Andy Desmond, Director of Anti-Trafficking Consultants, told Good Morning Britain that the hot weather simply makes cases, such as those of migrants in lorries, "more overt because of their own distress."
Following the discovery of 35 Afghan Sikhs in a shipping container at Tilbury Docks at the weekend, a lorry has been discovered carrying 15 migrants with suspected dehydration in Somerset. The German driver has been arrested.
15 people who were found in a lorry at a service station on the A303 in Somerset are spending the night at a village hall near Yeovil. Police have arrested the German driver. An investigation is underway into how the group, who claim to come from Kashmir and Eritrea, came into the country.
Our Somerset Correspondent David Woodland has this report:
The owners of a lorry found containing 15 people near Ilminster take incidents of human trafficking "very seriously," a spokesperson said.
The Thermotraffic spokesperson added: "At the moment we are in close contact with the British public authorities and support them to investigate the situation."
A German national has been arrested on suspicion of facilitating the unlawful entry of people into the UK. He is understood to be the driver of the lorry.
Human traffickers are using "increasingly dangerous" tactics in a bid to dodge strict border controls, a Home Office spokeswoman has said.
It comes after 15 people were discovered in a lorry in Ilminster, Somerset, earlier today.
The spokeswoman said border and immigration officers were now assisting Avon and Somerset Police in their investigation.
The doors of a lorry found containing 15 people suffering from possible dehydration near Ilminster was opened in the French port of Calais for nine minutes, sources tell ITV News.
ITV News producer Sandi Sidhu has tweeted:
Police say they were alerted to the presence of 15 individuals after people reported hearing "noises coming from the back of the lorry".
They previously reported that there had been 20 people onboard.
An investigation continues after a lorry containing 15 people was discovered in a lorry at a service station in Somerset. Superintendent Geoff Wessell said the driver of the lorry, who was in his late 30s, was the person who had been arrested and was being held at Yeovil police station. He arrived in the UK earlier today from continental Europe and was heading to the West Country.
Police were first alerted by a motorist behind the lorry, which was owned by international freight company Thermotraffic, who heard banging coming from inside. Mr Wessell said inside the lorry were 12 men, mostly in their late teens or early 20s but including one boy aged 15, and three women. Several could speak English. The group of foreign nationals was thought to have been on the refrigerated lorry for "several hours".
Police could see the back doors of the lorry moving as the people inside knocked to be let out, the officer in charge of the investigation has said.
Somerset Area Superintendent Geoff Wessell spoke to ITV News:
Latest ITV News reports
Fifteen illegal immigrants are being treated for dehydration after being found in the back of a refrigerated lorry deep in Somerset.