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Suspected people smuggler known as 'The Bald' in custody following arrest

PUBLISHED: 17:25 25 August 2016

Chen Canjian

Chen Canjian

Archant

Chen Canjian was arrested in Welling on Thursday morning

A Chinese national who was wanted by police in France is now in police custody after he was arrested in Welling earlier today (Thursday).

Chen Canjian is suspected of playing an instrumental role in smuggling migrants into countries including the UK and France.

The 43-year-old was apprehended in an early morning raid by NCA and Met Police officers acting on a European Arrest Warrant.

Chen, who was nicknamed ‘The Bald’ was wanted as part of a criminal group based in France, having previously been a resident in the Ile De France region.

He also used the aliases of Jian Chen, Jian Ding and Chen Can Jian.

Chen allegedy procured false documents for Chinese migrants seeking to travel to the UK, and his mobile number was found in the contacts of several suspected migrants arrested in France.

According to French authorities, Chen would receive payment from the China-based families of those using his services.

NCA regional operations manager, Graham Roberts said: “Chen is suspected of making substantial amounts of money from smuggling people across borders, and was therefore a target of the UK’s Organised Immigration Crime Taskforce.

“Working with partners around the world and in the UK, we continuing to identify and pursue the criminals facilitating illegal immigration, and take action to disrupt their networks.”

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