Man thought to have walked entire Channel tunnel

Man thought to have walked entire Channel tunnel

Suspected illegal immigrant, a Sudanese national, detected inside tunnel less than 1km from Folkestone terminal.

A suspected illegal immigrant is understood to have walked almost the entire length of the 31-mile (50km) Channel tunnel from France before being apprehended by Kent police close to the tunnel exit at Folkestone.

The man, who is a Sudanese national, was detected inside the tunnel less than 1km from the Folkestone terminal at 6.13pm on Tuesday.

Kent police said in a statement: “Kent police officers investigating an incident where a man was located in the Channel tunnel near to its exit at the Folkestone terminal at 6.13pm on 4 August have charged a man.

“Abdul Rahman Haroun, 40, of no fixed abode, has been charged with causing an obstruction to an engine or carriage using the railway under the Malicious Damage Act 1861.”

He was due to appear at Medway magistrates court on Thursday.

Immigration enforcement officers from the Home Office are also investigating the incident in a separate inquiry.

Eurotunnel’s detection systems had identified an intrusion near the tunnel entrance in France early on Tuesday. As soon as the alarm was raised, Eurotunnel closed the French entrance and police were called to conduct a search.

The search of the area was a detailed and necessarily lengthy procedure, which put customer, staff and intruder safety as the highest priority, Eurotunnel said.

The man was intercepted in one of the two railway tunnels, rather than the service tunnel which runs through the middle. He was arrested by the Channel tunnel police and a full service through the tunnel was resumed in the late afternoon.

A spokesman for Eurotunnel said a full investigation into the incident had been launched. “A criminal intrusion into the Channel tunnel is an extremely rare incident. It is both illegal and highly dangerous.” he said. “This person could have been seriously injured or killed.”

“Eurotunnel hopes that the full force of the law will be used to demonstrate that an attempt to enter the Channel tunnel poses not only a significant risk of injury or death, but also precludes any possibility of entering the UK to claim asylum or to find work.”
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