Border forces were shocked to discover a “very unusual” case of 28 illegal immigrants attempting to smuggle themselves out of Britain.
The immigrants, who are Bangladeshi, Pakistani, Afghani and Sri Lankan nationals and included two children, hid aboard a Polish lorry on a P&O ferry bound for France.
They were found on Tuesday morning by officials in Calais, and after being deemed “undesirable” by the French authorities, they were shipped back to Britain by the evening.
Chris Laming, a spokesman for P&O, said that catching immigrants who are trying to leave Britain is “very rare”.
The immigrants were met by immigration officials and police in Dover on Tuesday evening, and are now being detained in Dover, Kent, at the Border Force immigration centre.
A Home Office spokesperson said: “Border Force officers in Dover are currently processing 28 people who were found by the Police Aux Frontieres in Calais concealed in a lorry which had crossed the Channel from Dover.
“Under an agreement between the UK and French governments the 28 were returned to Dover in the same way as clandestine migrants found at our controls in Calais are passed to the French authorities.
“If those questioned are found to have no right to remain in the UK we will take action to remove them”…