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Wednesday, 26 November, 1997, 14:25 GMT
Britain to crack down on illegal immigrants

The British government is announcing new measures to step up its drive against trafficking in illegal immigrants.

For the first time, the National Criminal Intelligence Service is to pool efforts with the Immigration Office to target organisers of smuggling rings who charge thousands of dollars to bring illegal immigrants into Britain.

Last year, immigration officials detected seven hundred organised attempts to bring groups of up to fifty people into the country.

The main routes include those from Russia, Eastern Europe and the Indian subcontinent.

Immigrants are often smuggled in freight trucks, and in one recent case -- in the air conditioning system of the Eurostar train from Paris.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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