Two men have been arrested on suspicion of arranging the “illegal movement of migrants” across the English Channel, the National Crime Agency has said.
The NCA said the 33-year-old Iranian and 24-year-old Briton were held in Manchester on Wednesday.
The UK government has redeployed patrol vessels from the Mediterranean amid concerns at a rise in crossings.
Meanwhile, it is being reported that Home Secretary Sajid Javid has requested help from the Royal Navy.
While the MoD has not confirmed it will provide assistance, a spokesman said: “Our armed forces stand ready to provide additional capacity and expertise to assist the Home Office with the response to migrant crossings.
“Royal Navy ships continue to conduct patrols to protect the integrity of UK territorial waters.”
According to the Press Association, offshore patrol vessel HMS Mersey is “available and ready” to be deployed.