One of the UK’s most wanted fugitives has been arrested in Spain after spending nearly seven years on the run.
Mark Francis Roberts, 29, was arrested last night (Weds 10 May) in Estepona, Malaga, in an intelligence-led operation involving the National Crime Agency, Guardia Civil and Merseyside Police.
Roberts was discovered in southern Spain during surveillance and was identified and arrested by Guardia Civil officers.
Roberts, whose last known address was Freehold Street, Fairfield, Liverpool, remains in custody awaiting extradition proceedings.
He was wanted by Merseyside Police for alleged grievous bodily harm and the attempted robbery of a man’s £60,000 Richard Mille watch.
The victim was attacked by two men with a blade at around 1.30am on 30 September 2016 after he parked his car on his home driveway.
The victim refused to surrender his watch and suffered life-threatening injuries. He was treated in a critical care unit for puncture wounds, a collapsed lung and many lacerations.
Roberts featured in a Most Wanted campaign run by the NCA, independent charity Crimestoppers and Spanish law enforcement which targeted fugitives with links to Spain and the Canary Islands.
He is the eighth fugitive to be arrested from the campaign – six men remain on the run.
Steve Reynolds, NCA regional manager in Spain, said: “Roberts’s arrest came about after a sustained campaign to trace him and some great work by the Guardia Civil.
“This is another excellent result and shows once again that UK law enforcement does not give up on finding those who await justice in the UK.
“Working closely with our colleagues at home and abroad, such as our highly valued Spanish partners, we will continue to hunt those on the run.”
Detective Inspector Katie Coote of Merseyside Police said: “I hope this arrest shows that there is no hiding place for anyone who is evading police.
“Thanks to our ongoing work with National Crime Agency Roberts has been located and is now in police custody.
“These actions with our partners across the UK and beyond are about stopping anyone who could cause fear and harm in our community and we will leave no stone unturned no matter the length of time to find people who are wanted in connection with ongoing investigations or offences.”
Lord Ashcroft, founder and chair of Crimestoppers, said: “I am delighted that another fugitive has finally been caught and will no longer be able to avoid justice. Our Most Wanted campaign with the NCA – supported by the excellent work of Spanish law enforcement – has been an incredible success.
“Should you know the whereabouts of any other Most Wanted fugitives, please contact the charity Crimestoppers on freephone 0800 555 111 or fill out an online form at Crimestoppers-uk.org. You’ll stay 100% anonymous. Always.”
11 May 2023