7-year-old boy rescued from lorry after sending text about lack of oxygen

15 people were found on the back of a lorry in Leicestershire

A seven-year-old Afghan boy was rescued from a lorry after sending a textsaying he feared he could suffocate.

The child was among 15 people discovered by police in the vehicle at a service station on the M1 in Leicestershire.

The boy, who had been living in the Calais camp known as the Jungle, sent a message saying he was running out of "oksijan" - referring to oxygen - and pleading for help.

He is thought to have stowed away in a lorry bound for the UK with his elderbrother.

During the day the younger boy sent a text to a volunteer at a small charitycalled Help Refugees, which works in northern French camps.

She was in New York at the time but alerted Tanya Freedman in the UK.Ms Freedman said:

Using an interpreter the force spoke to the boy and the lorry was traced to Leicestershire.

Ms Freedman said: "They broke in the back and got everybody out."

Leicestershire Police said it was called by a partner agency to LeicesterForest East service station just after 3pm on Thursday.

Fourteen people were arrested on suspicion of being illegal entrants to the UK. In addition, a man was arrested on suspicion of assisting illegal entry.

A spokeswoman for the force added: "Safeguarding measures were put in place for a child who was found in the truck."

The case is now being dealt with by immigration services.