Man in Preston charged as part of investigation into small boat crossings

Small boats used by people thought to be migrants on the quayside in Dover, Kent. Credit: PA Images

A man has been charged as part of an investigation into small boat crossings across the Channel.

Amanj Hasan Zada, a 34-year-old Iranian national, was charged with two counts of facilitating illegal immigration, in relation to two crossings made from France to the UK in November and December 2023, a spokesman for the National Crime Agency said.

Zada, of Stefano Road, Preston, Lancashire, is due to appear before Preston magistrates on Tuesday, 7 May.

He was arrested in the early hours of Sunday as part of an investigation into an organised crime network believed to be organising cross-Channel small boat crossings, the NCA said.

Speaking after his arrest on Sunday, NCA senior investigating officer Al Mullen said: “Tackling this threat is a priority for the NCA, we have seen only in recent weeks how dangerous these crossings are.

“We are determined to do all we can, working with partners in the UK, Europe and beyond, to target, disrupt and dismantle the criminals organising them.”