East Sussex sex assault suspect arrested after European police co-operation
Sussex Police Notification
European police co-operation has led to the arrest of a man suspected of a sexual assault on a child in East Sussex.
On the evening of 21 August 2008 a six-year old girl was sexually assaulted while visiting a restaurant with her family in Rye, East Sussex. She was badly shocked but not physically injured.
The man, now aged 37, was working as a chef in the restaurant at the time. He was arrested on suspicion of the offence and was released on police bail while enquiries continued. He failed to return on his bail date and magistrates issued a warrant for his arrest. He was believed to have gone to Brazil but enquiries there failed to locate him.
There was then more recent intelligence that he had gone to Europe, including Portugal and the Netherlands, although there was no information to suggest exactly where he might be. The Crown Court then issued a European Arrest Warrant.
Following detailed enquiries by Sussex Police and the National Crime Agency Fugitives Unit, an appeal for his whereabouts was placed on the new Europol ‘Europe’s Christmas Most Wanted’ website, part of the Europol and ENFAST campaign, on 30 November 2016.
As a direct result of this appeal, several tips were received from the public in Holland stating that the man was employed as a chef at a sports cafe in Amsterdam. Dutch police followed up the tips and he was arrested at the cafe on 6 December, on the authority of the EAW. He is currently in custody to face extradition proceedings in The Netherlands.
Inspector Chris Collins of Sussex Police said; “This was a good example of international law enforcement co-operation leading to the arrest of a suspected sex offender. Our thanks go to the UK National Crime Agency, the Dutch police, and to Europo, for their assistance”
ENFAST is the European Network of Fugitive Active Search Teams, the EU network behind all the Fugitives Units in Europe. They are the official partners behind the EU Most Wanted webpage, which was created by and with the support of Europol.