UK Border Force Going Radio Silent While Picking Up Migrants from the French: Report

DOVER, ENGLAND - JUNE 09: A border force vessel carries newly arrived migrants after being picked up in a dinghy in the English Channel on June 09, 2021 in Dover, England. More than 500 migrants arrived in the final week of May, according to the UK Home Office, adding that …
Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

The UK’s Border Force has reportedly been employing covert tactics, including turning off tracking and radio systems while picking up migrants in the English Channel after a report claimed they were entering into French waters to ferry migrants to British shores.

Border Force cutters such as the Seeker allegedly have been turning off their Automatic Identification System (AIS) radar system used to prevent crashes in the busy waterway in order to avoid detection while accepting boat migrants from the French navy, it has been alleged.

The Border Force vessels have also reportedly gone radio silent during the manoeuvres after intercepted communications with the French appeared to show a British ship requesting permission to enter French waters to pick up a boatload of migrants.

The south coast sailor whistleblower who shared the communications told the Daily Mail: “The radio silence started after the balloon went up at the Home Office with the Mail revelation that Valiant was picking up migrants in French waters.”

He continued: “The French are using the radio to call up Border Force, but Border Force is not answering. I am listening in all the time. I am sure the new silence is not a coincidence. Border Force don’t want to be overheard.

“I believe they are using mobile phones instead of maritime radio to communicate with the French over any arrangements for mid-Channel migrant handovers.”

While the newspaper could not identify the purpose of the radio silence on all the occasions, it did report that on Thursday, the Seeker had turned off the AIS tracking system before returning to the Port of Dover with 30 migrants in tow.

The report went on to claim that French captains have also been turning off their tracking systems in order to conceal their “operation purposes” and to “keep route information secret”.

The scandal of the French navy handing over boat migrants to the Border Force was uncovered last May by Brexit leader Nigel Farage who claimed that the French vessels had ferried the migrants into British territorial waters.

The assertions from Mr Farage were later verified by ship transponder data seen by Breitbart London, which also uncovered a similar meeting between the Border Force and the French Navy a few days prior off the cost of Pett Level — a clandestine landing spot for illegal aliens.

The French have claimed that it is necessary to hand over the migrants rather than stopping them in order to protect lives, as some migrants have reportedly threatened to throw their own children overboard if the boats are stopped.

Earlier this month, Home Secretary Priti Patel had expressed her consternation that the Border Force may have sailed into French waters to facilitate the migrant crossings, saying: “My own instructions have been very clear with my department and in fact to the commander who oversees these Border Force operations that they should not be going into French territorial waters. That is absolutely wrong and there is now an investigation into that.”

Ms Patel has come under increasing scrutiny for her failures to mitigate the growing migrant crisis in the Channel, which has seen over 5,000 illegal aliens land on British shores since the beginning of the year.

In November of last year, the Home Secretary forked over another £28 million in taxpayer handouts to the French to step up patrols of beaches used by migrants to set sail for Britain. In total, the British public has sent some £192 million to France to stop illegal immigration since 2014.

Meanwhile, despite Patel’s repeated promises to crack down on people smugglers as part of her planned reforms of the country’s “broken” immigration system, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has dropped charges against 11 migrants accused of steering small boats across the Channel.

Patel has said that such defendants will be liable to life sentences. However, the CPS claimed that they were forced to drop the charges after a successful appeal from one of the alleged asylum seekers.

Follow Kurt Zindulka on Twitter here @KurtZindulka


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.