Most wanted fugitive arrested

A SUSPECTED drug trafficker from Liverpool who went on the run to Spain 12 years ago has finally been captured.

Scott Coleman, aged 40, from Walton, who was arrested as part of a Police Scotland investigation in February 2003, was charged with possession with intent to supply heroin but failed to appear for trial at Edinburgh Crown Court and fled to Spain.

The fugitive was finally captured, not in Spain but in Holland.

Coleman was detained by officers from Amsterdam Police on George Gershwinplein in the Stadium area. They were able to confirm his identity as a result of joint working with the National Crime Agency.

He is due to appear in court next Monday (February 23) when extradition proceedings will begin.

Coleman is the 65th fugitive to be located out of 76 publicised through Operation Captura – the multi-agency initiative between Crimestoppers, the NCA and the Spanish authorities.

Hank Cole, Head of International Operations for the NCA, said: “We know Coleman was in Spain for a while but like many fugitives he wrongly believed he could evade capture by moving around.

“There is no safe haven for fugitives. The NCA will continue to work closely with our law enforcement partners across the world to pursue these individuals and return them to the UK to face justice.”

Founder and Chairman of Crimestoppers, Lord Ashcroft KCMG PC, said: “The arrest of Scott Coleman is pleasing for two reasons. Firstly, he has been on the Operation Captura list since 2008, so his arrest is welcome news. And secondly, his arrest takes the success rate of the campaign to over 85%.

“This figure cannot be underestimated. We are talking about individuals accused or convicted of serious crimes, and it gives me great pleasure to see another one removed from our streets, thanks to the work of Crimestoppers, law enforcement, and the public.”

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