THE Guardia Civil have arrested nine immigrants who arrived in Cala Figueretes from the North of Algeria early this morning, according to Ramon Socias, the central government's representative in the Balearics. It is believed that one or two may still be missing.
He said that the missing immigrants are believed to have caught a bus to Palma, and the airport and port authorities have been alerted. The eight metre boat will be left where it ran aground until the investigation is finished.
Socias said that it arrived at around 7am yesterday, between Cala Llombards and Cap Salines, and was found between 8 and 8.30am.
Officers found clothing on board, which led them to believe that the immigrants may have changed clothes in order to go unnoticed. Socias said that one of the men arrested was wearing a suit and tie so that he could not be identified, as happened the last time, when wet clothes were a give-away. Papers will now be prepared so that the men can be repatriated.
Socias was unable to confirm if the skipper of the boat was among those arrested.
He said that the landings were sporadic, but becoming more frequent. There was nothing to indicate that they were being brought by people traffickers, although nothing can be ruled out, Socias said, adding that everything will be done to prevent this new route becoming a reality. Sophisticated new vigilance services will come into operation in the south of Majorca from Monday.