POLICE IN England have arrested an Irish man in his 50s after 15 people were found alive in the back of a lorry last night in Chippenham, UK.
The police service in Chippenham confirmed that at around 8.30pm on November 6th, a member of the public alerted them to "suspicious activity" involving a lorry on the A350.
When officers arrived on the scene they discovered the 15 people in the back of the Irish-owned lorry.
While the nationalities of the people involved have not been confirmed, police say they are all believed to be over the age of 16.
Fire and ambulance services were called and all 15 people were checked by paramedics, with one person subsequently being brought to hospital for further checks. That person has since been released and now all 15 people remain in police custody.
Police have arrested an Irish man in his 50s on suspicion of assisting with illegal entry and remains in custody in Swindon.
— Wilts Specialist Ops (@WiltsSpecOps) November 7, 2019
Irish transport company Seán Delaney and Sons, based in County Cork, confirmed to Irish radio show The Neil Prendeville Show that the lorry involved was one of theirs.
"We can confirm that the truck involved in last nights incident in Chippenham was one of our ‘Delaney Transport Trucks,” a spokesperson for the company said.
"Our driver was on the way from Callais to Dover. The driver heard knocking and thought it was a flat tyre.
“The Delaney transport driver then immediately called the Police who arrived to find 15 people in the back of the trailer," he continued.
“The driver was taken to the nearest police station and has been questioned. Mike Delaney has been co-operating with the police all morning and will continue to do so. His driver is also co-operating with Police.”
Duty Superintendent Steve Cox referenced the recent Essex tragedy in a statement, where he said he understood that " recent tragic events elsewhere in the country will mean there will be increased interest and heightened concern regarding this incident.
"I'd like to thank all emergency services who responded last night - as with all incidents, we didn't know the scale of what we would potentially be dealing with and all first responders showed true professionalism at the scene."
He also thanked the member of the public who initially reported the matter to police, saying "it is thanks to them that this incident was resolved swiftly and safely with no serious casualties".