This isn’t a refugee or migrant crisis/problem. It’s a modern day equivalent of the California Gold Rush but the “Gold” is Benefits and Welfare provided by the indigenous peoples of Europe. The entire thing is a scam.
Senior members of the NCA, dubbed Britain’s FBI, revealed the figures as they detailed the increasingly tough battle they face to stop people smugglers.
NCA directors warned of a sharp rise in attempted illegal sea crossings from Africa to Europe this year, with 300 people drowning last week.
Migrants are then crossing Europe and using increasingly devious ways to evade detection, including hiding in “coffin-sized” secret compartments in vehicles.
Migration across the Mediterranean from Africa is a critical issue for the EU, with member states arguing over the best way to deal with it.
Last month saw Italy turn away boats carrying migrants rescued from the sea while Angela Merkel’s leadership of Germany has come under threat as she faces pressure to reach a deal to cope with the issue.
Agreement was tentatively reached at an EU summit last month, but member states are still arguing over solutions.
Tom Dowdall, NCA deputy director of organised immigration crime, said the problem was growing. Attempted crossings to Greece and Turkey are up by 47 per cent on last year, with those to Spain and Italy up by 75 per cent.
They have not reached the peak levels of 2015, caused after Mrs Merkel made a controversial decision to open Germany’s borders and allow a million refugees in.
Mr Dowdall said: “The activity by the Italian Republic has caused a meltdown in Libya, creating a bottleneck. There are about 700,000 migrants in Libya and this is making it more difficult for them to move out.”