‘Most wanted’ killer found hiding in Canaries

A convicted killer has been arrested in the Caranry Islands just days after appearing on a “most wanted” fugitives list.

'Most wanted' killer found hiding in Canaries
Shane Walford was arrested in Fuerteventura on Saturday. Photo: Crimestoppers

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."

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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Jamie Acourt: Britain’s most wanted man won’t fight extradition from Spain

One of Britain's most-wanted fugitives was arrested by armed officers in Barcelona on Friday, the UK's National Crime Agency said.

Jamie Acourt: Britain's most wanted man won't fight extradition from Spain
An arrest photograph taken in Barcelona on Friday. AFP / NATIONAL CRIME AGENCY

Jamie Acourt, 41, from south London, is wanted for alleged involvement in the large-scale supply of drugs, the NCA said.   

Acourt is a former suspect in the Stephen Lawrence murder inquiry — a killing that triggered far-reaching changes to British attitudes and policing.   

Prince Harry and his fiancee Meghan Markle attended a memorial on Monday marking the 25th anniversary of the racist murder of the black teenager, who was stabbed to death at a south London bus stop in 1993.

Jamie Acourt was never tried in the Lawrence case and has always maintained his innocence.

He was detained on a European Arrest Warrant as he left a Barcelona gym.   

He had been due to appear in court in Madrid this week, but at a weekend hearing of the Spanish High Court it was accepted that he will not challenge his extradition.

“Acourt thought he could evade capture but as a result of an intelligence-led operation his days on the run have ended,” said Ian Cruxton, the NCA's international operations chief.

“We were able to direct the Spanish authorities to his location in Barcelona.

“Our ability to share information and work at speed with our international partners ensures there is no safe haven for fugitives. We will never stop pursuing these individuals.”

The NCA said he was the was the 81st fugitive to be located out of 96 publicised through Operation Captura, which targets Britain's most wanted in Spain.

London's Metropolitan Police said in a statement that the arrest related to a 2016 investigation.

A spokeswoman for the National Crime Agency (NCA) said: “We can confirm that he is not challenging his extradition.”

The NCA could not confirm when Acourt, who remains in custody in  Barcelona after appearing in court via videolink, will be brought back to the UK.

READ MORE: Hunt for ten most wanted Brit fugitives hiding out in Spain