The boat's skipper is now in prison. | Policia Nacional

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The "skipper" of a migrant boat that was intercepted on Wednesday last week has been ordered to prison without bail by a Palma court.

On Wednesday, the Maritime Safety Agency rescued nineteen people from a boat was that was adrift. As is usual in these cases, the National Police were responsible for processing the migrants and for investigation. The police established that the person now in prison was in charge of navigating the boat. He was charged with facilitating illegal immigration and belonging to a criminal organisation.

Investigators discovered that the boat had come from Boumerdes in Algeria and that the journey had lasted 28 hours. The migrants had each paid the equivalent of around 1,000 euros. There were no life jackets or warning systems on the boat, not even flares to mark the boat's position in the event of an emergency. The skipper was guided by a GPS device and a compass and had intended to arrive at the Cabrera archipelago. He didn't, and the boat was left adrift.