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The Pierrefitte connection netted nearly £3million from loading them into trucks bound for Britain. For the last 12 months police have watched the group closely, including bugging a bar in the Paris suburbs where the smugglers met to plot their crimes.
Raids this month saw seven people arrested, said French police.
The crime group smuggled migrants living around Paris out to the highway where they were loaded on to trucks.
The method reflects a shift of smugglers starting journeys further from the border in the belief that vehicles are less likely to be searched.
Supt Jean Arvieu has evidence of migrants boarding trucks from Bordeaux – more than 500 miles from Calais.
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