Most wanted: Fugitive rapist arrested in Tenerife

Spanish police said on Tuesday they had detained one of Britain's most wanted fugitives, who fled the country in 2008 after allegedly raping a woman and was found working in Tenerife.

Most wanted: Fugitive rapist arrested in Tenerife
Mohammed Jahangir Alam was arrested n Tenerife. Photo: Crimestoppers.

Mohammed Jahangir Alam, a Bangladeshi who had been living in Britain on a temporary visa, was convicted in absentia in 2010 for the alleged sexual assault, and sentenced to 14 years in jail.

“The fugitive was tracked down at his work place, a restaurant where he was eventually detained,” Spanish police said in a statement.   

They added he had fake ID on his arrest in Santa Cruz on the island of Tenerife, part of Spain's Canaries off the coast of Africa. It was unclear exactly when he was detained.

A Spanish police spokeswoman told AFP he had fled Britain in 2008.   

Mohammed Jahangir Alam, believed to be 32, was arrested as part of Operation Captura, a joint campaign by Spanish and British police to detain people in Spain who are suspected of committing crimes in Britain.

Last week, as Britain's National Crime Agency (NCA) and Crimestoppers, a police-backed British charity that appeals for help in solving crimes, marked the operation's tenth anniversary on Spain's southern Costa del Sol. They said 76 fugitives had been apprehended out of 86 publicised.

Since then, Matthew Sammon, a 45-year-old man accused of taking and possessing indecent photos of children, has been arrested in Spain.   

Like Mohammed Jahangir Alam, he also figured on Operation Captura's top ten list of most wanted fugitives in Spain.

Others on the list are accused of crimes ranging from murder, violent assault to drug trafficking and money laundering.   

Matthew Burton, head of the NCA's UK fugitives unit, said many British fugitives are attracted to Spain, where it is estimated 800,000 to a million Britons live as expatriates.

“It's been a magnet,” he said.   

“It's easy as a fugitive to blend in and conceal yourself.”

He said the highest number had been found in Spain, but Britons who had allegedly committed crimes also fled to Cyprus, Portugal and Italy.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.


Tenerife closes island as coronavirus infections soar but will still allow tourists

The government of the Canary Islands have decided to ban non-essential travel to the island of Tenerife from Friday after a recent surge in infections.

Tenerife closes island as coronavirus infections soar but will still allow tourists
Photo: AFP

Regional president Ángel Víctor Torres announced the “tough measures” late Wednesday and said the island would be close off to all but essential travel from Friday at midnight.

He said that for a period of two weeks, travel between municipalities on the island should be avoided, that  social gatherings would be limited to six people from a maximum of two households, and the curfew would be brought forward to 10pm.

But while the decision appeared to derail the plans of thousands of holidaymakers who have booked to travel to the island for some winter sun over Christmas, a clarification came from the island’s Health Ministry explaining that tourists were exempt from the ban.

Those already on the island will be allowed to stay on and return home as planned, while new arrivals, both from mainland Spain or elsewhere, will be welcome if they have proof of accommodation booked and a negative Covid-19 test taken within the previous 72 hours.

A spokesperson from Jet2 which is operating holidays to the island said:

“We are aware of news reports regarding Tenerife closing its borders to holidaymakers. We can assure customers that we have received confirmation from the Canaries Government that this is not the case.  Holidaymakers can still travel to Tenerife to enjoy Christmas and their well-deserved holidays in the sunshine.

“Given this welcome update from the Canaries Government, alongside the current FCDO travel advice, we are operating our flights and holidays programmes to Tenerife as normal.”

The cumulative incidence rate over 14 days on Tenerife has soared to 226 cases per 100,000 people from 137 cases a month ago, above the average across Spain which just topped 200.READ MORE: