Rapist who fled to Thailand after attacking woman in Preston is still on the run

Michael Foster fled to Thailand to evade police. Credit: Lancashire Police

A rapist who fled to Thailand after attacking a woman more than two years ago is still on the run.Michael Foster raped his victim - a woman aged in her 20s - in a flat in Preston in July 2020.

She was left wanting to end her own life after the horrific attack.

Foster was arrested and charged following the incident but failed to show up at court. Officers believe he left the UK for Thailand and never returned.

Foster was sentenced in his absence at Preston Crown Court. Credit: MEN Media

An international manhunt remains underway to track him down, police said. Foster's trial went ahead in his absence at Preston Crown Court in September and a jury unanimously found him guilty.

On Monday 7 November, the 35-year-old, formerly of Fishwick Parade, Preston, was sentenced to eight years in prison, again in his absence.

He was also ordered to sign the sex offenders' register for life.

Lancashire Police said his victim told the court how the attack had almost destroyed her life.She said she felt like she wanted to end her own life and ended up losing her friends, job and self-esteem.

She said it was little short of a miracle, that she was still alive.

Detective Constable Sue Wilson, of Lancashire Police, said: "Michael Foster's attack on this vulnerable woman has had an absolutely devastating effect on her life and it is a violation from which she has said she will never fully recover.

To compound his crime Foster has failed to take any responsibility for his actions and has fled the country to try and evade justice.

"The substantial custodial sentence imposed by the court today reflects the gravity of the offending and we will now do all we can to find Foster and ensure he is returned to the UK to serve his sentence."

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