Investigation after raid death

11Sep08


Man dies following raid by police and immigration
9th September 2008

An investigation is underway as to how a man died following a raid by police and immigration officers at his home in Woodford Green, Essex. 36-year-old Frank Odame was found with head injuries below a block of flats after ‘police officers and UK immigration officials attended a residential address in Lambourne Court, Woodford Green’. A post mortem has been held and the cause of death was given as head and chest injuries.

At least four other people are known to have died during similar incidents, Joy Gardner (1993); Joseph Nnalue (1994); Noorjahan Begum (1996) and Joseph Crentsil (2001). All the deaths have occurred in the London area and all but one (Noorjahan Begum) involved the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) and immigration officers. (Read the IRR’s factfiles on the Deaths of asylum seekers and undocumented migrants.)

The Metropolitan police press release reveals that the 7am visit to Lambourne Court was carried out under Operation Swale. According to the MPS, Operation Swale ‘is a joint operation between the MPS and the Borders and Immigration Agency to tackle immigration crime that blights London’s communities.

Codenamed Operation Swale, the alliance was formed in May 2007 in order to crackdown on a small minority of foreign nationals and some UK citizens involved in immigration-related crime and to boost public confidence. The aim is deter criminals from causing harm to our communities by developing a more joined up approach and in doing so encouraging victims and witnesses to come forward.’

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