COPS in Vietnam have arrested eight people over the discovery of 39 bodies in a lorry in Essex, it was revealed today.
Police chief Nguyen Huu Cau revealed: “Based on what we learn from the suspects, we will actively launch investigations to fight and eradicate these rings which bring people illegally to Britain.”
Police and forensic officers at the Waterglade Industrial Park in Grays, Essex[/caption]
On Friday, officers arrested two people and summoned others for questioning on suspicion of involvement in the incident following the shocking discovery on October 23.
The move comes after British police arrested four over the tragedy and are now seeking to question two other who have links to the road-haulage and shipping business.
The bodies of the victims were found in a refrigerated trailer on October 23 in an industrial park in Essex.
Police said the truck came from a Belgian port.
The 25-year-old driver of the truck, Maurice Robinson from Northern Ireland, has been charged with 39 counts of manslaughter.
He was also charged with conspiracy to traffic people, conspiracy to assist unlawful immigration, and money-laundering.
Prosecutors said he was involved in an international trafficking ring as he appeared in court this week.
Three others who were arrested have been released on bail.
Officials from Vietnam arrived in the UK on Sunday armed with DNA samples and essential documents to help identify victims.
According to local reports, Minister of Public Security To Lam said: “The ministry has assigned a set of tasks, of which the foremost priority is to rapidly confirm the victims’ identities.
“If a Vietnamese national is identified, we will try to bring them home in the fastest way possible.”
News of the arrests in Vietnam came after British MPs said the tragic’deaths should be a “wake up call for the Government” to rethink its approach to illegal migration.
The Foreign Affairs Select Committee warned a policy focused on closing borders will drive migrants to dangerous routes and push them into the hands of smugglers.
A total of 39 bodies, including one teenager, were found inside the container.
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On Friday, Essex Police announced that it believed all the victims were Vietnamese after previously stating it was thought they were Chinese.
One mother looking for her Vietnamese daughter is questioning whether Pham Thi Tra My, 26, is one of the victims after she text home saying: “I’m sorry Mum, my path to abroad didn’t succeed.
“Mum, I love you and Dad so much! I’m dying because I can’t breathe.”