A LARGE number of suspected illegal immigrants have been found in the back of a lorry in Portsmouth.
Police were called shortly after 8am this morning by a member of public reporting concerns for the welfare of a number of people, in the back of a lorry, on Quartremaine Road.
Thirty-one immigrants were found inside the lorry.
The lorry has the name Ricardo Paul on it. Border Force are at the scene.
An official spokesman for Hampshire police said: ‘We were called at 8.07am by a member of the public reporting concerns for the welfare of a number of people in the back of a lorry.
‘Officers are currently with the lorry on Quartremaine Road and are making enquiries.’
Ronan Kehoe, 40, is carrying out steel work at the ‘new police station’ down the road.
He said: ‘When I walked past I saw the lorry, lots of police cars, and as I went further I saw it was immigrants who had been found.
‘It’s quite shocking. I’ve been working on this job since the second week of January and this is the first time I have seen anything like this - it’s very surprising.’
Arron Brown, 25, is working with him. He added: ‘This is mental, I’ve never seen anything like it.
‘32 is a lot of people to be coming here.
‘I’ve been on this job for two months and I didn’t even know this sort of thing happens.’
A passer-by, who wishes to remain anonymous, said the incident looks like ‘a massive police operation’.