French authorities have arrested 15 people in connection with the deaths of migrants in a boat crash near Calais.

A group of smuggling suspects have been arrested in France after 27 people died while trying to cross the English Channel last November.

Prosecutors say they have so far filed charges against 13 men and two women, seven months after the incident off the coast of Calais.

The suspects are believed to be members of an Afghan smuggling ring that charged around €3,000 per person to transport people to the UK.

One of the suspects was taken into custody, while nine others appeared before a Justice of the Peace on Thursday.

Only two people survived after a ship with migrants was carrying 29 people sank off the coast of France on 24 November.. Most of the people on board were Iraqi Kurds.

The shipwreck was the deadliest since migrants began trying to cross the English Channel, sparking renewed tensions between France and Britain.

Last year, 35,300 migrants attempted the dangerous crossing, with 30 deaths, according to French authorities.

On Wednesday evening, the French Coast Guard rescued 84 more migrants in two boats off the coast of Calais and Le Touquet.

In 2022, between 10,000 and 15,000 people are estimated to have already attempted to cross the English Channel.