****UK BORDER FORCE CORRUPT****
A Border Force guard was among 12 people arrested as police swooped on a gang suspected of smuggling millions of pounds worth of guns and Class A drugs into Britain through the Channel Tunnel.
The 36-year-old officer based at the Eurotunnel terminal at Folkestone was arrested by French police near Calais in a joint operation with the Met and the National Crime Agency
Three other UK nationals were held in France as police seized bags containing 11 firearms, including pistols and revolvers, along with ammunition and silencers.
French officers also recovered about 34 kilos of cocaine and seven kilos of heroin with an estimated street value of up to £5 million.
The police operation had targeted a suspected organised crime group. The border guard is suspected of using his position to avoid checks to help get weapons and drugs into the UK.
Among the guns seized was a CZ 75 pistol, a handgun used by the army in the Czech Republic.
The Border Force officer was arrested with the three other British nationals at a location near Calais on Friday after a surveillance operation by French officers.
Shortly after, eight men were arrested by detectives from Scotland Yard’s Organised Crime Command at different locations in Kent.
Six were due to appear at Barkingside magistrates’ court today charged with conspiracy to import firearms and Class A drugs. Two men were freed under investigation.
Officers from the National Crime Agency’s Anti-Corruption Unit have also carried out searches at two locations in Folkestone and Dover.
The unit’s head, Dave Hucker, said today: “Our investigation is ongoing, both in the UK and in France.”
The four Britons held near Calais were still being questioned by French police today. Earlier this year the NCA warned that more weapons were being smuggled into the UK from mainland Europe and there has been a rise in shootings.
In July, 79 handguns were found in engine blocks being taken by van through the Channel Tunnel. It was the largest haul of handguns ever seized by British police.