Two men claim asylum in Ottery

Officers were left puzzled after two men walked off the street into Ottery Police Station and stated they wanted to claim asylum.

The men, suspected illegal immigrants, knocked on the door at the back of the Old Convent on December 19 to the bemusement of police inside.

PC Phil Thomas said the men did not speak much English, but were claiming to be from Syria and fleeing the internal conflict there.

He said: “It’s not something you really expect in Ottery, god knows how they ended up in the town in the first place to claim asylum.”

Officers kept the pair at the station and contacted the UK Border Agency, who came to find out who the men were.


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A spokesman for the agency said officers arrested them and took them to Heavitree Road police station in Exeter for questioning.

He said: “One, believed to be Syrian and aged under 18, is now in the care of local social services.”

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The second, a 22-year-old man from Algeria, he said has made an application for immigration, which is being considered by the authorities.

“If it is rejected he will face removal from the country,” the Border Agency spokesman added.

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