Brighton immigration raid faces protesters

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Media captionImmigration officers confronted by demonstrators

Protesters confronted police and Home Office officials as an immigration raid took place on a £130m building site.

Immigration enforcement officers visited the site in Circus Street, Brighton, after receiving "intelligence", the Home Office said.

Officers drew batons as they were met by protesters chanting: "Stop deportations."

Seventeen men were arrested for immigration offences, the Home Office confirmed.

They presented themselves as Albanian, Indian, Ukrainian and Kazakhstani.

Image copyright Eddie Mitchell

Building firm Henry Construction said it had "fully complied" with the Home Office investigation.

Some 142 new homes, accommodation for 450 students and office space is being built on the site of a former fruit and vegetable market.

Developer U+I said it was "committed to ethical practice," adding that all contractors were required to "abide by employment and immigration law".

Protesters gathered at the site after activists shared news of the immigration operation on social media.

Sussex Police has been contacted for comment.

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