The UK's fastest-growing regional news network
20°C | 12°C
22°C | 12°C
23°C | 13°C
See the full forecast for your area.
Sponsored by Britelite.
Home Gravesend News Article
A man who went on the run for almost a decade until he was arrested in Medway is finally being extradited back to the USA.
Sean Lopes, 47, who was named as one of America’s most wanted, had been jailed for 15 years in his absence for the attempted murder and kidnap of a woman in New York in 2004.
Lopes had been living in Victoria Road, Luton, Chatham, before his arrest and working as a night manager at Sainsbury’s in Gravesend.
Officers caught up with him in New Road, Chatham, in May last year after a tip-off.
Lopes has appeared before Westminster magistrates via video link on numerous occasions but his case kept being adjourned.
After his arrest, Chatham MP Tracey Crouch wrote to Home Secretary Theresa May wanting to know how he managed to get into the UK and find work here.
However, she received a letter back from the UK Border Agency, which said that under the Data Protection Act, information would not be revealed unless Lopes gives agency officials permission to talk about his case.
In December a judge at the London court sent the case to the Home Secretary Teresa May for a decision on whether to order an extradition.
A spokesman for the Home Office has now confirmed an order has been signed to send him back to America, eight months after his arrest.
A Home Office spokesman said: “On January 29 the Secretary of State, having carefully considered all relevant matters, signed an order for Sean Lopes’ extradition to the United States.
"Mr Lopes has been convicted of kidnapping and possession of a weapon.”
Lopes now has two weeks to appeal that decision.
Click here for more news from Gravesend.
Click here for more news from around the county.