Palma.—The Guardia Civil arrested 11 illegal immigrants early yesterday morning who had been spotted in a lone vessel in waters south of Cabrera by men working on a fishing trawler.

Security forces were quick to respond to the alarm call which came through to the Maritime Rescue Services about 5.30am, and lost no time in having the boat and its occupants towed to the harbour in Portocolom. Arrival there was around 9.15am.

In good health
The eleven detainess were young men and all were found to be in basically good health. They were taken to police headquarters in Manacor, to await transfer to Palma. There, their case will be assessed by judicial authorities and it is expected that a process of repatriation will then be put in order.

All the boats carrying illegal immigrants to the Balearics which have been stopped by the Guardia Civil since 2007 have come from ports in Algeria. Yesterday, attempts were being made to establish the nationality of each of the 11 men arrested.

The immigrant vessel seized yesterday was the second of its kind this year. On 18th January, a boat detected by radar reached the coast of Ses Salines in south Majorca carrying eight immigrants who had set off from the Algerian port of Dellys.

There are seven radar stations set up in the Balearics which form part of an External Detection system. It was one located on Cabrera which picked up January's eight immigrants and managed to track them for four hours. Prior to that, an immigrant boat reached Majorca on 1st October, 2010 carrying 14 immigrants.