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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Natalia Penza & Emilia Bona

Fugitive 'The Big Guy' handcuffed and held in Marbella

This is the moment a convicted drug trafficker was arrested just 24 hours after being named one of the most wanted fugitives on the run in Spain.

Joshua Hendry was held on Thursday, January 20 in San Pedro de Alcantara near the Costa del Sol resort of Marbella after being recognised by an off-duty officer.

Footage showed him being escorted through an underground car park by a single police officer, wearing a mustard green tracksuit top and bottoms.

READ MORE: Fugitive 'The Big Guy' sought over £1m drugs plot linked to his mum and brother

The 30-year-old, from Walton, is now facing extradition back to the UK.

The National Crime Agency said when it named Hendry last Wednesday: “He is accused of being a member of a Liverpool organised crime gang and conspiracy to supply Class A drugs.

"It is alleged he trafficked heroin and crack cocaine from Liverpool to Grimsby for onward distribution and controlled the phone line used for this.

"His mother and brother were convicted as part of the conspiracy.

"Hendry is also wanted over a separate drugs conspiracy to supply cocaine in May 2018 for which he was sentenced in his absence to 10 years' imprisonment in March 2019."

He was the first of the 12 men named in Wednesday’s appeal to be held.

Prior to his arrest he had been linked to the town of Estepona which is a 20 minute drive west of San Pedro.

Confirming the detention, a Spanish National Police spokesman in Malaga said: “One of the 12 fugitives on the UK’s Most Wanted list of criminals in Spain has been held.

“The detention took place less than 24 hours since the start of a new edition of the Most Wanted operation."

Tom Dowdall, NCA Deputy Director of International, said: “This is a rapid result and it’s testimony to the power these appeals can have as well as the NCA’s international reach.

“Whether it’s using tip-offs from the public, sharing intelligence or deploying specialist capabilities, UK law enforcement and our Spanish partners are working as one to trace and arrest the other 11 fugitives.

“Those men will know now that we’re after them. They can live their lives anxiously looking over their shoulders and wondering if today’s the day they get caught or they can do the right thing and hand themselves in.”

Chief Inspector Rhodri Troake of Humberside Police said: “We’d like to thank the National Crime Agency for their assistance in locating and arresting Hendry as a part of an efficient and fast-moving operation.

“Hendry is alleged to have trafficked heroin and crack cocaine from Liverpool to Grimsby for onward distribution within our local communities.

“This type of criminality can cause significant disruption to our local communities and we will continue to do everything we can to continue to bring those responsible to justice.”

As well as drug kingpins, the British fugitives believed to be on the run in Spain who were named last Wednesday include two suspects wanted for murder and underworld armourers.

The list was released at a launch in Madrid as part of a joint initiative between the National Crime Agency, Crimestoppers and Spanish police.

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