SEVEN people have been arrested and thousands of suspected unlicensed viagra and weight loss pills were seized after a major immigration raid in Southall.
Acting on intelligence, officers from Home Office Immigration Enforcement swooped on a property in Lady Margaret Road at 6am last Thursday (April 18).
Immigration checks were carried out on the people living there and five Indian men, aged between 25 and 43, were arrested for overstaying their visas.
Four of the five were detained pending their removal from the UK, while one was granted immigration bail while steps are taken to get him out of the country.
A 37-year-old Egyptian man was also arrested for entering the UK illegally. He too was detained, pending his removal.
Another 37-year-old Egyptian man, named as Hany Mohamed Moustafa El Kady, was arrested on suspicion of obtaining leave to remain by deception and possession of false identification.
He was later charged and appeared before Ealing Magistrates last Friday (April 19). He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to six months in prison.
During a search of the premises, Immigration Enforcement officers uncovered hundreds of thousands of what are believed to be unlicensed viagra and weight loss tablets. It is thought they had a potential value of around £500,000.
The drugs have now been referred to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulation Authority for further investigation.
Rolls of suspected counterfeit labels for branded whisky and vodka bottles were also discovered, alongside a number of bottles of alcohol. These have been sent to Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs officials for checks.
Assistant director Sarah Burton, head of the Home Office’s West London Immigration Enforcement Team, said: “It was an excellent piece of work by all officers involved.
“Not only did they detain a number of people who were in the UK illegally, but they’ve also potentially prevented a significant quantity of black-market pills making it onto our streets.
“This was the latest in a series of operations targeting illegal immigration in West London, and for those who are in living and working here illegally there is no hiding place.”
Southall is a hotspot for immigration offences, with a number of raids carried out in the area every year.
Anyone with information about immigration crime can contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 anonymously or visit http://www.crimestoppers-uk.org.