Birmingham & Black Country

Sex offender Thomas O'Brien found in Irish Republic

Thomas Patrick O'Brien
Image caption O'Brien was arrested on Thursday, police said

A convicted sex offender who had been on the run for 10 years has been returned to jail after being caught in the Irish Republic.

Thomas Patrick O'Brien, 35, was convicted of the attempted rape and indecent assault of a man in Birmingham in February 2000.

He failed to turn up at the Court of Appeal for a hearing after his conviction in 2001, police said.

Officers tracked him down to an address near Dublin.

'Lengthy investigation'

A warrant, issued in January 2001, stated that he be returned to prison on his arrest, the spokesman added.

"Officers from the Public Protection Unit travelled to the Republic of Ireland and arrested him on Thursday 30 June," the police said.

"He was flown back to Birmingham on Thursday afternoon, escorted by officers, and was taken straight to prison to begin his sentence."

Det Con Del Powys, from the Child Online Safeguarding Team, said: "It is the result of years of investigation, but I was always confident that we would eventually find him.

"The message is that we won't give up on offenders on the run - we keep working to make sure we find criminals who think they can escape and bring them to justice.

"Our main aim is to ensure that justice is done for the victims of crime, as well as taking dangerous offenders off the streets, and with this investigation we have made sure that both are done."

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