UK Border Agency announces new law enforcement strategy, which will go a “step further” in the defence against criminals, smugglers and illegal immigrants.
Borders and Immigration Minister Phil Woolas this week launched a new UK Border Agency (UKBA) crime and law enforcement strategy.
The five-year strategy, ‘Protecting our border, protecting the public’ was launched today at a conference on organised crime.
Phil Woolas said:
‘The agency is the UK’s first line of defence against criminals, smugglers and illegal immigrants. Protecting the public lies at the heart of what we do. Combating border and immigration crime, such as drugs smuggling and large-scale facilitation of illegal entry, is a core part of that role.
‘We can be proud of our achievements, but in this new strategy we are positioning ourselves to tackle these crimes more coherently and effectively. We are already actively working with law enforcement partners, particularly in pilot areas in the North West and the Midlands. It is only through collaboration that we can deploy the necessary variety of approaches to intervene and reduce the harm caused by organised crime.’
The minister cited an example of joint working where a team involving officers from our Midlands ‘Rebutia’ immigration crime team, the UK Human Trafficking Centre, the Gangmasters Licensing Authority and Derbyshire police broke up a human trafficking gang who were exploiting foreign workers in a chicken processing plant. As a result of the operation, three offenders are awaiting sentence, cash has been seized and civil penalties paid.
The strategy captures the full range of our existing and planned law enforcement commitments under one heading. Its delivery is organised under four mutually supporting objectives:
- Deter – Strengthening UK resilience against immigration and cross border crime
- Disrupt – Breaking up criminal activities and organised criminal groups
- Detect – Identifying and locating those responsible for criminal activity and the smuggling of illicit goods
- Deal – Taking action against those engaged in all levels of criminal or non-compliant activity
You can download the strategy from the UKBA website. Source UKBA.
Immigration Matters Comment
The announcement does not make it clear exactly what a “step further” means, however could we be a step closer to a UK Border police?