‘Costa del crime’ Briton hands himself in

Author: By Alistair Keely, Press Association

Michael Eddleston, 27, from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, was wanted in
connection with three counts of illicit trafficking in narcotic drugs and
psychotropic substances.

He handed himself in to the British consulate in Majorca yesterday and was
arrested, crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers said.

Eddlestone was one of 10 men featured earlier this month in an appeal on the
Costa Del Sol, known as Operation Captura.

The charity’s founder and chairman Lord Ashcroft said: “To have a wanted
individual hand themselves in within a week of the launch of Operation
Captura is a fantastic result.

“It clearly shows that by publicising the faces of these men, the media can
play a key role in flushing dangerous criminals out of hiding. Although
criminals can run, as a result of Operation Captura, they can’t hide for
long.”

Among those still on the “most wanted” list are men suspected of robbery,
child sex offences, drug smuggling and violence.

They include Liverpool heroin smuggler Joseph Morley, 46, who disappeared
while on licensed day release during a 15-year prison sentence.

Others are suspected child rapist Martin Smith, 44, from Tyneside, convicted
child sex offender Stephen Burnell, 56, of Scunthorpe, and suspected
Manchester jewellery robber Benjamin Murphy.

Several Spanish coastal resorts have been dubbed the Costa del Crime since the
1970s because hundreds of wanted British criminals are thought to have fled
there.

The Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) and Spanish police authorities are
also involved in the initiative.

Several waves of appeals, first launched in October 2006, have led to the
arrest of 23 out of 40 suspects.

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