Eighty illegal immigrants landed in Malta late last night.

The migrants - 66 men and 14 women, including three who were heavily pregnant, landed in two groups in the Freeport area. There was also a seven-year-old boy.

The AFM said in a statement it was notified by the police that some 40 illegal immigrants had made it to shore on the rocky coastline behind the Freeport oil-bunkering facility and that a sizeable rubber dinghy had also been observed in the choppy sea just offshore. The AFM’s Maritime squadron's dispatched a patrol boat to the area to investigate.

The boat intercepted the dinghy, with 40 immigrants on board, in the entrance to Marsaxlokk Bay's.

The migrants were towed to Wied il-Buni quay in Birzebbugia as their outboard engine was inoperative.

In the meantime, the police informed the army that a number of migrants from the dinghy had fallen overboard and the AFM sent a rescue-launch to search for survivors. The body of a dead male migrant was recovered.

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