A fugitive pensioner wanted for alleged child sex offences has finally been arrested by Spanish police – after more than a year on the run.
Frank Burgon, 76, was discovered holed up in an apartment in Puerto Rico, Gran Canaria, after fleeing Britain while awaiting trial.
He had pleaded not guilty to offences of rape, attempted rape, and three allegations of indecent assault against a girl.
But following the hearing in November 2012 Burgon fled and failed to turn up to five further court appearances.
He was made the subject of a Europe-wide arrest warrant and was finally found by two uniformed police officers and a detective.
The former fisherman, from Hartlepool, Co. Durham, is currently in the custody of Spanish authorities awaiting extradition.
A spokeswoman for Cleveland Police said: “Cleveland Police can confirm that a 76-year-old man was arrested on Sunday, December 29, by Spanish authorities, on suspicion of breach of a court order.
“He is currently in the custody of the Spanish authorities awaiting extradition proceedings.”
Burgon was due to face a trial in his absence early next year if he was not found, but now it is expected that he will attend the court proceedings.
He was granted bail in November 2012 but failed to turn up to several court dates at Teeside Crown Court and did not keep in contact with his legal team.
Burgon had not kept in contact with his legal team and the trials were put off every time to give the authorities a chance to track him down.
During a previous court hearing the court heard he had access to a boat somewhere in the Mediterranean.
Christopher Knox, prosecuting, said: “The defendant was a fisherman. He has, I understand, absconded.
“He is believed to have absconded comprehensively in that he is outside the jurisdiction and there is no obvious indication that he can be returned.
“My understanding is he has a boat, or some boat is available to him in the Mediterranean somewhere.
“He has certainly not kept in touch and these matters have now been going on for some time.”
Burgon was arrested in the early hours of December 29 on suspicion of breach of a court order.
An extradition hearing was expected to be held on December 30 but the outcome of which is not yet been released.