Paedophile agrees to be sent back to Britain from Hong Kong

HONG KONG (AFP) - A convicted paedophile and former competitive ice skater who used the sport to groom young girls has agreed to return to Britain after he was arrested in Hong Kong on an extradition request.

Joseph Tsang, a fugitive from British police who was convicted in August of two counts of rape and two counts of sexual assault, was arrested by the city's police in September and has since been remanded in custody.

"He's consented to return to the United Kingdom for sentence," Tsang's counsel Oliver Davies told AFP on Tuesday (Nov 24), a day after an appearance by the 31-year-old at a magistrates' court.

Tsang, who wore a yellow T-shirt and looked relaxed during Monday's hearing, will be back in court on Wednesday to sign a "consent order", clearing the way for his extradition.

"Within three months (from Wednesday), he will be returned," Davies added.

This comes after the city's leader Leung Chun Ying issued the "authority to proceed" for Tsang's extradition, the South China Morning Post reported.

Tsang had previously indicated he would challenge the extradition request by the British government.

He was convicted in absentia by a British court in August after he broke free from his electronic tag and failed to show up for a court appearance, the Post previously reported.

He was also found guilty of taking indecent pictures of children, inciting children under 16 to engage in sexual activity, and engaging in sexual activity with a minor.

Tsang had his British passport confiscated by British police and was suspected to have entered Hong Kong on a second passport.

British police had earlier told the Post that Tsang, a former competitive ice skater, used the sport to groom young girls.

An extradition treaty between Hong Kong and Britain came into force in 2002.