Imam Jailed in France Over Helping Illegal Migrants Cross English Channel

© AFP 2022 / Handout / SOCIETE NATIONAL DE SAUVETAGE EN MERA handout image made available by France's Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM) on February 18, 2019, shows British rescuers (front) helping some 20 migrants on a semi-rigid boat trying make their way from France across the English Channel
A handout image made available by France's Societe Nationale de Sauvetage en Mer (SNSM) on February 18, 2019, shows British rescuers (front) helping some 20 migrants on a semi-rigid boat trying make their way from France across the English Channel - Sputnik International
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Earlier, Britain's Border Force intercepted 74 people, including minors, on eight vessels trying to cross the English Channel to reach Britain, while two further boats were stopped by French authorities.

According to the media outlet Euronews, a French court has sentenced an imam to two years in prison for aiding illegal migrants to cross the English Channel with help of inflatable boats.

READ MORE: 'Record Number' of Migrant Boats Seen Off Coast of Kent, UK (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

The imam, an Iranian national, was accused of organising a number of crossings from France to England.

The 39-year-old preacher lost consciousness after hearing his sentence.

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Police have started an investigation after life jackets were found on the beach in France. Moreover, boats and engines were found at the imam's house by the police.

The prosecution said that the man, whose name has not been disclosed, was contacting groups of traffickers.

The EU has been challenged by the migration crisis since 2015 due to the influx of hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing their home countries in the Middle East and North Africa. The relocation of migrants within the bloc has caused tensions within and among the EU countries.

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