Costa del Sol narcotics swoop
A suspected major drug trafficker has been arrested in Spain after a year-long hunt.
Lloyd Wright, 40, from Hemel Hempstead, was nabbed by armed police at his bolthole close to Benidorm, Alicante.
Wright faces a 10-year jail term in the UK if convicted for a number of alleged drug trafficking crimes.
A police spokesman in Alicante said: “The suspect was detained on a European Arrest Warrant by National Police agents from Alicante and Malaga on October 10. He was transferred to Madrid on October 11.”
Investigators said that Wright hid out on the Costa del Sol before fleeing to the popular expat stronghold of Alfaz del Pi, four miles north of Benidorm.
Spanish National Police issued a video of Wright under police custody, describing him in a press release as “one of the UK’s most wanted fugitives”.
A National Crime Agency (NCA) spokesman was unable to give further details of the arrest when asked on Friday (October 21).
Wright now faces extradition proceedings to the UK at the National Court in Madrid.
News of the arrest comes as suspected paedophile Matthew Sammon was tracked by Spanish police to his campervan at a fairground in Fuengirola on the Costa del Sol.
Wanted for possession of indecent images of children, Sammon, 45, from London, is believed to have been hiding out on the Costa del Sol for almost two years.
Sammon’s arrest on Thursday night came just 24 hours after being named one of Britain’s 10 most wanted criminals.
His former boss Daniel Reid, a plasterer from Blackpool, tipped off authorities to the man’s whereabouts after Crimestoppers launched Operation Captura – a joint operation between UK and Spanish cops – to hunt down the 10 most wanted British criminals thought to be hiding from justice in Spain.
Steve Reynolds, head of international operations for the NCA, said: “The fugitives we are hunting are wanted for serious crimes and must be returned to the UK to face justice.
“Many of them use Spain as a base to continue illegal activities which still have an impact on the UK, but it is not a safe haven.”
Lord Ashcroft, founder and chairman of Crimestoppers, said: “We know that with the help of Spanish authorities, along with the public in Spain and the UK, we can find these people.”