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  1. ITV Report

Four men jailed after smuggling people 'like cattle' into Newlyn

Four men have been jailed for their part in an illegally smuggling 29 Vietnamese nationals into the UK through a Cornish fishing port.

Police said he victims, some of them women and children, were "treated like cattle" as they crossed the channel from Roscoff in northern France on board a dilapidated yacht.

[The vessel] was in a poor state, smelling strongly of diesel and cluttered with clothing and empty food wrappings.

The boat would have been extremely cramped with all 29 people having to share a single toilet.

– Devon and Cornwall Police
Credit: ITV West Country

After arriving in Newlyn, the group was bundled into the back of a waiting van which drove almost 100 miles before being stopped by police on the M5 at Cullompton.

Jon Ransom, aged 63 from Kent, Glen Bennett, aged 55 from Burnley, Keith Plummer, aged 63 from Sheerness and Frank Walling, aged 72 from Colne were all jailed for more than 16 years in total at Truro Crown Court.

  • See our reporter Sam Blackledge's full report below
Credit: ITV West Country

DI Glenn Willcocks from Devon and Cornwall Police said: “We welcome today's sentencing and hope it serves as a reminder that people are not commodities to be handled like cattle with total disregard for their health and safety.

  • Andrew Wallis is the Chief Executive of the South West-based anti-slavery charity Unseen. See his summary of how common this is below