Tragic news from Essex where 39 potential victims of trafficking are found dead in a container lorry. Bernie Gravett comments on the BBC.

Human trafficking and people smuggling blights the UK and the world. This lorry originated in Bulgaria but the victims could originate from any part of the globe. The route taken was from Ireland to Holyhead and across the UK to Essex. The fact that the lorry crossed perhaps 10 countries without detection shows that borders are porous. My heart goes out to the families of the victims but also to the officers and police staff dealing what is likely to be a horrific scene. We must do more to fight trafficking.


Bernie Gravett was interviewed today on BBC News at 11. While it is early in the police investigation Bernie highlighted the scale of human trafficking in the UK. That last year victims from over 130 countries were discovered in the UK and this is only the tip of the iceberg.

Bernie was asked how such an investigation would be managed. He emphasised the horror being faced by police officers and support staff in the forensic examination at the scene. He outlined that the victims would be unlikely to have any documentation and this would make identification difficult officers would be looking for other clues as to the source country of the victims. Then the police will be looking to engage with law enforcement in the source country and any transit countries along the route. This will be a long and complicated investigation.