Wanted man, 80, arrested at airport after 27 years on the run

  • Claire Hannah sent this report from Chester Crown Court where Burrows appeared.

An 80-year-old man has been arrested at an airport after 27 years on the run.

Richard Burrows, who is accused of historic sexual abuse of children, was arrested at Heathrow on Thursday after returning to the UK from Thailand, a spokesman for Cheshire Police said.

The force said he has been wanted since December 1997 when he failed to attend Chester Crown Court to face trial for two counts of buggery and 11 counts of indecent assault.

The charges relate to alleged abuse between 1969 and 1981, reported to have taken place at a children’s home in Congleton, Cheshire, and in the West Midlands.

Detective Inspector Eleanor Atkinson, from Cheshire Police, said: “Our determination to locate Burrows has not faltered over the past 27 years and his arrest marks a significant step forward in this case and the beginning of closure for all those involved.

“I would like to thank the public for the information that they have provided over the years during our search for Burrows and I hope that his arrest provides some reassurance.

“I also hope that his arrest acts as a warning to any other wanted suspects – demonstrating that no matter how long you hide, we will find you and you will be arrested.”

Efforts to locate Burrows since his disappearance have included a Crimewatch appeal in 1998.

Duncan Burrage, National Crime Agency (NCA) international liaison officer in Thailand, said: “Utilising our international network and working closely with Cheshire Police colleagues, we have been able to track down a fugitive wanted in connection to extremely serious allegations.”

Burrows has been remanded in custody and appeared at Chester Crown Court on Tuesday, the police spokesman said.

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know...