Eastbourne and Willingdon MP Caroline Ansell has backed new proposals to tackle people smugglers and criminal gangs behind the English Channel small boats crisis.

Caroline supported an amendment to the Online Safety Bill tabled by her colleague Natalie Elphicke.

It creates a new criminal offence of intentionally sharing a photograph or film that facilitates or promotes modern slavery or illegal immigration.

More than 44,000 people have crossed the Channel this year – many of them Albanian 

The smugglers often brazenly post videos in Albanian on platforms like Tik Tok, Facebook and WhatsApp with comments like: “At 8 o’clock the next departure, hurry to catch the road” and “The trips continue, contact us, we are the best and the fastest”.

“Being able to limit how these criminals communicate could help us deter people from making the dangerous journey across the Channel in small boats,” said Caroline.

“The content they post with impunity is brazenly encouraging immigrants into the UK. Anything that makes it more difficult for this to happen has my support.

“Everything must be looked at. These crossing have connections with very serious crime including modern slavery, the drugs trade and trafficking.”

Government ministers have agreed to look at changes to the bill at its next stages in Parliament.