Saturday, April 12, 2008

"Foreign nationals now account for almost half of all drink-drive arrests in the city"

The city being Peterborough.

Within minutes two Lithuanians are brought in after police find them allegedly carrying CS spray canisters in their car.

Then an Egyptian arrives. He has been arrested at a factory. He pretends he's a Palestinian in the vain hope to avoid deportation. Officers have seen it all before and deal with him patiently.

The Chief Constable of Cambridgeshire Julie Spence recently made headlines when she spoke out about the huge strain mass migration is placing on existing police resources.

This is a city where you can find interpreters earning more than the Chief Constable. One translator dealing with Latvian and Lithuanian prisoners picked-up £150,000 last year - the tab settled by tax payers. Thorpe Wood police station alone spent £500,000 on interpreters last year. Insp Chip Walker tells me: "The problem with different nationalities, for people who don't have English as a first language, is that it slows everything down - while we've got people here we need to get hold of interpreters by telephone or face to face."

In 2003 12% of people arrested in Peterborough were foreign nationals, the force said. Three years later that figure had risen to 20%. Foreign nationals now account for almost half of all drink-drive arrests in the city.

I decide to conduct my own research at Peterborough Magistrates' Court. Of the 95 cases listed on a daily court list, 75 of them involve migrants.