Today at 6:10 PM | Source: BELGA
PHOTO: MICHEL VANNEUVILLE
The Bruges investigating judge arrested four transmigrants from Eritrea for the entry of the port of Zeebrugge. This is reported by the public prosecutor of West Flanders, department Bruges. Two other port invaders were summoned before the correctional court via fast-track law.
Seven transmigrants were discovered in a trailer at C.RO-Ports in the port of Zeebrugge on Saturday. All refugees said they were from the East African country of Eritrea. Based on their fingerprints, the shipping police found that the suspects had already invaded the port of Zeebrugge several times.
Most Eritreans say they stay during the day in the vicinity of the Brussels North Station. Often with the help of human smugglers, they then look for trailers that are probably on their way to the United Kingdom.
In total, five suspects were brought before the investigating judge. One of them was not arrested because the young man may still be a minor. The other four port invaders will remain in prison at least until Friday's council chamber session. Their two companions, who were caught less often, will have to account for the Bruges criminal court through quick-release law.
The port of Zeebrugge is often seen by migrants as the gateway to the United Kingdom. To counter that problem, the intrusion of a port facility since mid-June 2016 is a criminal offense. Previously, intruders could only be prosecuted for their illegal stay in Belgium.
According to the public prosecutor in January and February about 45 people were prosecuted for entering the port. On Friday, twelve harbor invaders from the Bruges criminal court were given effective prison sentences of six to ten months. "The port of Zeebrugge continues to exert a great attraction for people who want to get to the United Kingdom", attorney Frank Demeester concludes.