Monday, 1 November 2010

Chelmsford cleric "happy and content" after sham marriage applications dry up

THE rector of a church in Tilbury once besieged by a “flood of sham marriages” says there hasn’t been a trickle since he enlisted the help of the UK Border Agency.

Father Tim Codling, of St John the Baptist Church, Dock Road, told the authorities that he believed a marriage of two foreign nationals he was due to conduct in August was fake.

They set up a sting and stormed the wedding on August 25, arresting five people, including the bride and groom.

Three months on Father Tim has nothing but praise for the UK Border Agency and Essex Police, but the diocese of Chelmsford is a different matter.

He said: “The support we have had from the UK Border Agency and Essex Police, both secular organisations, has been phenomenal, they have kept us fully up to date.

“The church is seen as a caring organisation, after the sting we requested a meeting with the bishop at the earliest opportunity “Sadly the earliest opportunity isn’t until November 28, I’ll let people draw their own conclusions from that.” Read more

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