Police shut M27 in illegal immigrant hunt

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POLICE shut a stretch of motorway for more than an hour after four suspected illegal immigrants fled from the back of a lorry onto the carriageway.

The men are thought to have travelled from Italy to Hampshire in the articulated lorry.

The News understands the driver raised the alarm after spotting what he thought was a person’s arm in the back of the vehicle while he was driving.

He also spotted that covers to the side of the lorry has been slashed.

The quick-thinking driver alerted police shortly before noon today.

Officers were dispatched to his destination – at Power Technique Ltd in Concorde Close, Segensworth.

However on his arrival four men leapt out of the lorry and made a bid for freedom – running onto the M27.

Dramatic scenes ensued as police closed both carriageways between Hamble Bridge and just past Junction 9 at Fareham.

Officers started a rolling roadblock while they pursued the men.

A police helicopter was called in from Bournemouth to help locate the men – who are thought to be Chinese and aged between 25 and 30.

Three of the men were eventually arrested on the carriageway shortly before 1pm.

They are being held in police custody.

Police were due to alert The Border Agency as part of their investigation.

Meanwhile the fourth man is still at large.

A Hampshire Constabulary spokesman said: ‘Police on the ground formed a rolling roadblock to keep traffic back while the road ahead was closed.

‘Three of the four men were caught and arrested shortly before 1pm. The outstanding man is described as being of Chinese extraction and wearing dark clothing.

The road has now been reopened.’

Anyone with information should call police on 101 or the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555111.