British fugitive charged with abusing minors found in Spain

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Spanish police have arrested a 60-year-old British man wanted on child sex abuse charges in Britain, the interior ministry said Wednesday.

The man, identified only by the initials L.K., was detained in the town of Torres de Segre in the northeastern province of Catalonia, it said in a statement.

He is wanted for 18 offences against children between the ages of 13 and 15 which were committed between 1996 and 1999, while they worked for him during the time he ran a newspaper shop in Bath.

The man was charged with seven counts of abuse in 1999, against two girls and a boy, and was released ahead of his trial set for the year 2000.

But he failed to turn up for the trial and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

British police in reopened the case this year after two other children who had initially denied being abused by the man reversed their initial story and said they had been sexually assaulted by him and another 11 counts of abuse were added to the charges.

"These victims denied in 1999 having been assaulted because, as they told police when the case was reopened, they were inhibited from telling the truth by the presence of their parents during questioning," the statement said.

About one million of Spain's population of around 46 million people are British nationals who live in the country all or part of the year.

© 2011 AFP

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