ELEVEN illegal immigrants have been arrested after stowing away aboard a lorry transporting orchids to the New Forest.

The 11, understood to be teenagers from Afghanistan, leapt from the lorry after it completed its journey from Holland to the Double H Nursery in Gore Road, New Milton.

One of the stowaways is thought to have been only 11 years old.

Four were detained in the Gore Road area but the others managed to board a train. They were spotted at Southampton Parkway railway station and were later arrested on a sliproad at Junction 5 on the M27.

A police spokesman said all 11 had now been handed over to the immigration authorities and placed in secure accommodation.