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WATCH: Immigration Enforcement Raid Shop Following LBC Investigation Into People Smuggling
3 October 2019, 07:55 | Updated: 3 October 2019, 09:39
This is the moment a man suspected of being the money agent for a people smuggling gang was arrested by Immigration Enforcement officers in Birmingham.
An LBC investigation into a people smuggling gang working out of Dunkirk in northern France tracked a man who took the money to reserve a place on a boat crossing the English channel.
Working out of a newsagent in Birmingham, the man is being investigated as part of a suspected money-laundering operation for a gang, who would take customers’ money and transfer to an account in Pakistan once the person had arrived in the UK.
After covertly filming the investigation by an undercover reporter, LBC handed the information to the Home Office.
On Tuesday, they raided the newsagent and arrested one man. He remains in custody.
LBC's Rachael Venables, who watched the raid, writes: "It could have been any high street in any city in the UK, it was a grey, drizzly day with the traffic was moving slowly and shoppers milling around on the pavement. We met up in an empty car park on the road running parallel with our target's. There were around a dozen people, a mix of immigration enforcement agents, a few officers from the national crime agency, a press officer and myself.
"The team all knew who they were after, thanks to undercover footage already provided by LBC, and the plan had been laid out with a briefing in a central Birmingham hotel earlier that morning.
"The team started to march down the road in single file, it took less than sixty seconds to reach the front door of the newsagents - which looked completely innocent - sat in the row of shops. There was a quick pause - and they were in. One after the other the officers flooded the shop, confused customers were ushered out. One of the NCA team stood guard outside, and those in turned their attention to the man stood behind the till.
"They searched him, took his keys and started to search the property.
"While all that went on around me I couldn't help but notice how totally ordinary this little shop was."