Essex lorry deaths: Man charged with human trafficking offences

A man has been charged with human trafficking offences in relation to the deaths of 39 people found in a lorry in Essex in October (Picture: REUTERS/Peter Nicholls)
A man has been charged with human trafficking offences in relation to the deaths of 39 people found in a lorry in Essex in October (Picture: REUTERS/Peter Nicholls)

A man has been charged with human trafficking offences in connection with the deaths of 39 people found in the back of a lorry in Essex last month.

Essex Police said Christopher Kennedy, 23, of Corkley Road in Darkley, County Armagh, Northern Ireland, will appear at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on Monday (November 25).

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He was arrested on Friday (November 22) in connection with the investigation into the discovery of 39 Vietnamese nationals in a refrigerated lorry trailer found in Grays on October 23.

Lorry driver Maurice Robinson has been charged with manslaughter (Picture: PA)
Lorry driver Maurice Robinson has been charged with manslaughter (Picture: PA)

A statement from the force said the Crown Prosecution Service had authorised charges of conspiracy to arrange or facilitate the travel of people with a view to exploitation and conspiracy to facilitate the commission of a breach of UK immigration law.

The discovery of the bodies in the container which had been shipped to Purfleet from Zeebrugge in Belgium sparked a huge investigation as police worked to identify where the 31 men and eight women were from.

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Lorry driver Maurice Robinson, 25, of Laurel Drive, Craigavon, has been charged with 39 counts of manslaughter. He is due to appear at the Old Bailey on Monday.

Three other people who were arrested on suspicion of manslaughter and conspiracy to traffic people have been released on bail.

 

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