Paedophile on run from UK police arrested in Hong Kong

HONG KONG (AFP) - A paedophile on the run from British police appeared in court in Hong Kong on Saturday (Sept 26) after being arrested on an extradition request, reports and police said.

Police in the southern Chinese city said they had arrested an unnamed 31-year-old on Friday, but reports identified him as Joseph Tsang, a fugitive convicted last month of two counts of rape and two counts of sexual assault last month.

"Upon a formal extradition request from the British police, Hong Kong police last night arrested a 31-year-old man in connection with two cases of sexual offences in the United Kingdom," Hong Kong police said in a statement.

He was denied bail at a magistrates' court and his case was adjourned until Nov 23, the South China Morning Post reported.

Tsang was convicted in absentia by a British court last month after he broke free from his electronic tag and failed to show up for a court appearance, the Post 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.