After 13 years evading capture mark Lilley was arrested by Spanish police today after being found naked, hiding in his panic room.
The panic room was concealed behind a wardrobe in his bedroom at his Spanish villa.
The joint Spanish National Police and Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) operation involved more than 40 armed officers.
Dave Allen, head of the Fugitives Unit at Soca, said: "Lilley was a dangerous man with access to firearms. He had evaded capture for a long time by moving around Spain and using false identities. Now he's behind bars where he belongs and extradition proceedings are under way.
"My message for other fugitives on the run is a simple one - we will hunt you down and you will face justice for your crimes."
Spanish police have released video footage of one of Britain's most wanted fugitives being arrested in Malaga.
41-year-old Mark Lilley skipped bail in the UK but was sentenced in his absence to 24 years in prison in 2000 for drug trafficking.
Police used ladders to climb over the tall main gate of Lilley's villa before forcing their way inside. They found the fugitive in a hideout behind a wardrobe.
Lilley had a computer where he controlled the security cameras monitoring the grounds of the villa. A police statement said that Lilley's dogs alerted him to the police operation.
Officers said Lilley's appearance had "changed considerably" and that he had become an expert in vale tudo, a Brazilian martial art.
Spanish police have arrested British fugitive Mark Alan Lilley after 13 years on the run.
Lilley was sentenced to 24 years in prison in 2000 - in his absence at Bolton Crown Court - for drug trafficking after he skipped bail.
It is understood Lilley was discovered by police hiding in a false wardrobe at a property in the Costa del Sol.