Advertising migrant Channel crossings on social media ‘should be a specific crime’

Cruel people traffickers who advertise to would-be migrants on social media should be targeted under a crackdown, Labour says tonight

The Government’s plan for tackling the smuggling gangs sending people on perilous journeys across the English Channel should include moves to stop them promoting voyages on sites like Facebook and Tik-Tok, ministers will be told.

Labour has tabled an amendment to the Nationality and Borders Bill, which returns to the Commons on Tuesday, that would “criminalise those who promote the deadly crossings online”.

It would make it an offence to advertise, including on social media, “services designed to facilitate these dangerous journeys”.

Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said: “If the Government is serious about tackling the criminal gangs that are profiting from putting people’s lives at risk, it must not keep ignoring the way they are luring vulnerable people in online.

“Sophisticated criminal gangs are using social media to advertise perilous crossings for their own profit and the policing and intelligence response is failing to keep up.

“The Government should back Labour’s amendment this week to criminalise those who promote and glamourise these dangerous crossings online.”

When Theresa May was Prime Minister in 2018, she told EU chiefs that people traffickers were using Facebook to sell desperate migrants trips to Europe.

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Published by MigrationUK

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