Huffpost UK uk

British Fugitive Mark Lilley Arrested Naked In Spanish Villa (PICTURES/VIDEO)

Posted: Updated:
Print Article

One of Britain's most wanted fugitives has been caught hiding naked in a panic room at his luxury Spanish villa, the Serious Organised Crime Agency (Soca) has said.

Convicted drug trafficker Mark Lilley went on the run in 2000 when he skipped bail during a trial.

He was finally arrested when more than 40 armed police officers launched a dawn raid on his home in Malaga on Saturday.

mark lilley

Lilley as he was arrested

Officers were unable to open Lilley's panic room, but he surrendered after realising there was no escape. He had been alerted to the operation when several hunting dogs he kept in his garden started barking.

Whilst in the panic room he was naked and watching the raid using a computer linked to CCTV cameras.

Extradition proceedings have begun to return Lilley to the UK.

Footage of the operation shows officers climbing over a gate before running to Lilley's front door and smashing their way in with a battering ram.

Story continues after slideshow...

Mark Lilley Arrest
of
Share
Tweet
Advertisement
Share this
close
Current Slide

The fugitive is then seen being handcuffed with a strip of cloth wrapped around the lower half of his body. Tattoos covering large parts of his head, chest, arms and back are visible.

The footage shows how the panic room was concealed behind a wardrobe in his bedroom, which had a four-poster bed.

A police helicopter hovered above the villa in the Alhurin de la Torre area during the raid, which was a joint operation by the Spanish National Police and Soca. A handgun was recovered.

After going on the run, Lilley, 41, from Warrington, Cheshire, was given a 23-year prison sentence in his absence for masterminding a large-scale drug operation and firearm offences.

His appearance during Saturday's raid was significantly different to how he looked in a photograph used by Soca to appeal for information about his location.

lilley

The Soca photo

Dave Allen, head of the Fugitives Unit at Soca, said: "Lilley was a dangerous man with access to firearms. He had evaded capture for a long time by moving around Spain and using false identities. Now he's behind bars where he belongs and extradition proceedings are under way.

"My message for other fugitives on the run is a simple one - we will hunt you down and you will face justice for your crimes."
Roger Critchell, director of operations at Crimestoppers, said: "We are extremely relieved that this dangerous drug-dealer has been arrested and will be made to face justice.

"This latest capture brings the total number of suspects located as part of Operation Captura to 51 out of 65.

"We would like to thank the public for all their support and information so far but also remind them that there are still 14 dangerous individuals we still need to locate and Crimestoppers will not rest until we find them. Please tell us what you know, not who you are."

Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555111.

Around the Web

UK fugitive Mark Lilley caught naked in Spanish villa panic room