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29 immigrants hop off yacht and into a van, court hears

Fishermen were stunned when a dilapidated yacht came into harbour and 29 illegal immigrants climbed out, a court heard.

The old boat docked at Newlyn, Cornwall at 7:00am last April after sailing across the Channel.

Locals and passers by watched on in ‘amazement’ as men, women and children were guided down a pontoon and smuggled into a van, which then departed followed by an Audi TT, said Don Tait, prosecuting.

They informed the police who then tracked the vehicles as they travelled along the M5 before stopping them near Cullompton, Devon. Inside the van, officers found 29 Vietnamese immigrants.

Keith Plummer, who drove the van, and Jon Ransom, who drove the Audi, were arrested, while the two men who sailed the yacht, Frank Walling and Glen Bennett,  were seized at the harbour café.

Yesterday, Ransom, 63, appeared at Truro Crown Court and denied assisting unlawful immigration into an EU country. The three other alleged accomplices have already pleaded guilty.

The trial continues.

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Source: Daily Mail

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