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The place where the 39 bodies were found in the truck at Grays in Essex is cordoned off by the British police. REUTERS / Hannah McKay

Thirty-nine bodies were discovered in a truck on the night of Tuesday to Wednesday in Grays, Essex, east of London.

The driver, originally from Northern Ireland and aged 25, was arrested for murder, announced Wednesday, October 23, 2019 the British police. According to preliminary evidence, the truck was from Bulgaria and entered the United Kingdom on Saturday, 19 October at Holyhead, a port on the west coast of England.

No immediate information has been provided on the origin of the victims. We do not know if the victims were migrants. " The victim identification process is ongoing, " Essex police chief Andrew Mariner said in the statement.

Many migrants have been trying to reach the United Kingdom in recent years by hiding in truck trailers or by boats crossing the English Channel. A security device was put in place and the accesses of the Waterglade Industrial Zone, where the truck was discovered, were closed.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson reacted, saying he was " horrified " by this news. He went on to say, " My thoughts are with those who have lost their lives and loved ones. "

I'm appalled by this tragic incident in Essex. I am receiving regular updates and the Home Office will work closely with Essex Police as we settle exactly what has happened. My thoughts are with those who lost their lives & their loved ones.

Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) October 23, 2019

(with AFP)