Spaniel sniffs out illegal immigrants

Forty-eight illegal immigrants were discovered huddled inside a lorry trailer in Dover last night - the second highest number ever caught trying to enter Britain. They were sniffed out by a springer spaniel called Danny, whose bark alerted Customs and immigration officials to the presence of the immigrants after the lorry bringing them into the country was driven off a cross-Channel ferry.

Twenty-six of the illegal entrants, who were from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Eritrea and China, were sent back to France. The remainder, discovered after the trailer arrived on a ferry from Calais, were still being interviewed last night by immigration officers. The lorry driver was also being questioned.

Michael O'Brien, a Home Office minister, praised Danny's alertness and added: "This government is determined to crack down on the abuse of our immigration rules." Sniffer dogs, introduced in 1995, have helped to stop a record 153 concealed immigrants this month. - Kate Watson-Smyth