The bodies of 31 men and 8 women were found on 23 October on board a container in the industrial area of Grays, east of London.
A 23-year-old Irishman, arrested on Friday in the mass grave truck case found in England with the dead bodies of 39 illegal Vietnamese immigrants on board, has been charged with smuggling human beings, police said Sunday (November 24th). British. Christopher Kennedy, further charged with conspiracy to organize the travel of persons for exploitation and violation of immigration laws, will be brought to justice on Monday in Essex (south-east England), the police said.
The bodies of 31 men and 8 women were found on 23 October on board a container in the industrial area of Grays, east of London. The container came from the Belgian port of Zeebrugge. The driver of the truck, 25-year-old Mo Robinson, also from Northern Ireland, is accused of 39 murders, trafficking in human beings, aid for illegal immigration and money laundering. He is scheduled to appear in London's criminal court next week.
Another Northern Irishman, Eamonn Harrison, was arrested in Dublin. The 22-year-old man from Newry is facing extradition proceedings on the same charges. Three other suspects were arrested and released on bail as part of the investigation. The Essex police also want to interview two brothers from Armagh, Northern Ireland, and call them to surrender.
Many of the victims were from a poor region of central Vietnam, who lives in fishing, agriculture or industry. Families are getting into thousands of dollars to send one of them to the United Kingdom, via clandestine channels, in the hope that they will find profitable jobs there.
The tragedy illustrates the dangers of illegal immigration, with unscrupulous traffickers taking advantage of the vulnerability of candidates, who often end up in illegal nail bars or cannabis farms, reduced to a state of semi-slavery.