Eight arrested in Vietnam over migrant lorry deaths

Eight arrested in Vietnam over migrant lorry deaths

Eight arrested in Vietnam over migrant lorry deaths

Victims of Essex lorry death who were earlier presumed as Chinese by the Police have been thought to be from Vietnam, Essex Police said on November 1.

Vietnam's foreign minister demanded stricter penalties for human traffickers after 39 migrants, a lot of them from the South Asian nation, had been learned wearisome in a truck in England final month.

In a separate development on Friday, police in Vietnam confirmed they had arrested two people in connection with the 39 deaths and human trafficking.

Detectives initially said the victims discovered near the port of Purfleet were from China.

Assistant Chief Constable Tim Smith of Essex Police said on Friday evening: "At this time, we believe the victims are Vietnamese nationals, and we are in contact with the Vietnamese Government".

The arrests in the United Kingdom followed two more arrests in Vietnam on Friday on suspicion of involvement in the deaths.

Numerous suspected victims came from Ha Tinh province where police arrested two in connection with "the case of 39 dead bodies found in a container truck in the UK", according to a Friday statement on the website of the Ha Tinh police in central Vietnam.

Officials are now working to identify the victims after DNA samples were collected from families in Ha Tinh and Nghe An provinces in central Vietnam.

They were held on Sunday on suspicion of organising people smuggling overseas.

Tra My's dad, Pham Van Thin, told Vietnamese media that his daughter was among the victims, telling the Tuoi Tre newspaper that the family had been notified by someone who called from England.

Last week the driver of the truck, Maurice "Mo" Robinson, 25, appeared in court, charged with 39 counts of manslaughter.

Daniel Stoten, the officer leading the investigation, said police had spoken by telephone to Ronan Hughes recently but needed to question the brothers in person.

Meanwhile Eamonn Harrison, from Mayobridge, Co Down. appeared in court last Friday also changed with 39 counts of manslaughter.

After 10 Vietnamese families reported their relatives missing, fearing they were among the 39 victims, Ha Tinh regional police launched a criminal investigation into suspected human trafficking, the statement posted on their website said. Essex Police in Britain said they had started extradition proceedings to bring him to the U.K.to face charges of manslaughter.

"Three other people have been arrested in connection with this investigation".

The Hughes brothers, aged 40 and 34, are from the Armagh region of Northern Ireland and have links across the island of Ireland to the road haulage and shipping business, said Stoten.

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