French police pursuing gun & drug smugglers arrest British Border Force officer
The 36-year-old, from Dover, was arrested along with three other British men on Friday October 6.
The arrests come as part of a joint UK-France international operation targeting a criminal group suspected of importing armaments and controlled substances via the English Channel.
Nine handguns and two revolvers were recovered, along with magazines and suppressors.
Some 34kg of cocaine was also seized, along with 7kg of heroin.
A further eight people were arrested by the Metropolitan Police Organized Crime Command in Kent, six of whom were charged with conspiracy to import firearms and class A drugs. They have been remanded in custody and are due to appear at Barkingside Magistrates Court on October 9. The other two men were released but remain under investigation.
Officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA)’s Anti-Corruption Unit have also carried out searches at two locations in Folkestone and Dover as part of the operation.
Dave Hucker, who leads the unit, said: “This operation has brought together law enforcement from both sides of the Channel, and we believe we have prevented the importation of a significant quantity of class A drugs and firearms to the UK.
“Our investigation is ongoing, both in the UK and in France.”
The operation was spearheaded by the NCA (Britain’s version of the FBI) and the Metropolitan Police Service, with the collaboration of the UK Home Office and the Central Office for the Repression of Organized Crime of the French National Police (OCLCO).
Detective Chief Superintendent Michael Gallagher, head of the Metropolitan Police Organized Crime Command, said: “We are pleased to work with the NCA and French police during this ongoing investigation. Operations like this show the importance of working together when suspected organised criminal networks operate across borders.”