Only 96 small boat migrants arrested under new measures, report says
13th December 2022

Only 96 small boat migrants have been arrested under new powers to crack down on Channel crossings, report says

  • Figure represents 0.3 per cent of those who have crossed Channel since summer
  • Home Office spokesman said additional 180 arrests made under other immigration laws for that period
  • Those arriving in UK without proper permission or good reason could face up to four years in jail

Fewer than 100 small boat migrants have been arrested under new powers to tackle illegal arrivals.

Measures introduced under the Nationality and Borders Act earlier this year allow anyone who arrives in the UK without proper permission or good reason to be sentenced to up to four years in jail.

But only 96 arrests have been made under the measures since they came into force at the end of June, reported the BBC, which obtained the figure.

It represents 0.3 per cent of those who have crossed the Channel since the summer. Ministers said at the time that the measures would deter migrants from making the crossing.

Pictured: People are escorted ashore after they were picked up in the English Channel at docks in Dover on November 26, 2022

A Home Office spokesman said that apart from the 96 arrests under the new measures there were an additional 180 under other immigration laws since the summer.

Labour’s immigration spokesman Stephen Kinnock said: ‘The Nationality and Borders Bill was a sham that has increased bureaucracy and delays without offering any serious measures to tackle the problem. Since it came in, the problems have got worse.’

Labour’s immigration spokesman Stephen Kinnock said: ‘Labour has a serious five-point plan to tackle this problem, including a major new cross-border police unit to pursue the gangs and a fast track for Albania and other safe countries. The Conservatives need to get a grip’

He added: ‘The Government has failed to properly tackle the smuggler gangs or resolve asylum claims and has increased the backlog – further delaying decisions for those fleeing persecution. 

‘Labour has a serious five-point plan to tackle this problem, including a major new cross-border police unit to pursue the gangs and a fast track for Albania and other safe countries. The Conservatives need to get a grip.’ 

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