Heathrow 'lightens drug checks' amid queue crisis
Drug checks at Heathrow are being relaxed amid the airport’s immigration queue crisis, according to reports.
Airport news for Heathrow,Travel on 07/05/2012.
News media said this week that senior customs officials have said they have been ordered to cut back on efforts to combat the smuggling of illegal narcotics, guns and other forms of contraband to shorten queues at border checkpoints.
The news comes as the UK’s busiest airport continues to see the longest waits in its history at UK Border Agency checkpoints, just months ahead of the expected influx of passengers for the Olympic Games set to be held in the capital this summer. Reports have said that some passengers have waited in excess of three hours.
One unnamed immigration officer reportedly said that there was basically “no border control” to check for such contraband at the airport as a result of reduced staff and increasing pressure on the Border Force from ministers and airline industry officials to end the crisis. He added that the word of the stoppage had already traveled to many criminal enterprises.
The news comes just after home secretary Teresa May has been asked to come up with emergency procedures for providing relief and as the Prime Minister is reportedly looking at options to reduce wait times at the west London gateway as quickly as possible.