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'Most wanted' killer found hiding in Canaries

Fiona Govan · 23 Mar 2015, 10:33

Published: 23 Mar 2015 10:33 GMT+01:00

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Shane Walford, 38, was tracked down to the island of Fuerteventura and was arrested there on Saturday, according to a statement by Spain’s National Police force.

The arrest marks the first success of the latest campaign by Operation Captura which last week published a list of the top ten most wanted British fugitives thought to be hiding out in Spain.

The arrest was announced on twitter by Ignacio Cosidó, the director general of Spain's National Police force.



Walford, an ex-soldier and former boxer, was convicted in 2010 of the manslaughter of an off-duty fireman in Coventry.

He was jailed for four and a half years for killing father of two Paul Gibbons with a single punch outside a bar.

But he was released on license in January 2012 when he absconded and a recall to prison was issued, said the UK’s National Crime Agency (NCA) which released the most wanted list in connection with CrimeStoppers.

He was arrested last Saturday "as he attempted to board a flight to Shannon Airport in Ireland. Walford, who was using a false identity and travelling with his girlfriend, was arrested and detained on a European Arrest Warrant (EAW) for a recall to prison for manslaughter," said a statement from the NCA

On the "most wanted" list Walford was described "as 5ft 11ins tall and has numerous tattoos including a black panther on his left arm as well as a boxing gloves tattoo on his abdomen".

"Walford’s arrest, less than a week after his details were made public as part of Operation Captura, highlights how the public play such an important role in helping us to locate and track down these fugitives," said Hank Cole, the NCA Head of International Operations, in a statement to The Local. 

"Once again, working with our partners both in the UK and overseas, we will leave no stone unturned to track fugitives who think they can evade capture, ensuring they are returned to the UK to face justice."

Story continues below…

This is the ninth Operation Captura appeal to be made since 2006, and Walford is the 66th out of 86 wanted fugitives to be caught.

Click here to go straight to the latest gallery of the UK's Most Wanted in Spain


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Fiona Govan (fiona.govan@thelocal.com)

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