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Andrew Moran arrest: One of the Britain's most wanted criminals - arrested in Spain's Costa Blanca - begins extradition in Madrid court

Moran, from Salford, was convicted in 2009 of an armed robbery involving a gun, machete and baseball bat

A machete-wielding armed robber who was among the UK's most wanted will appear in a Spanish court today after he was caught in a dramatic police swoop.

A judge will begin extradition proceedings.

Andrew Moran, 31, from Salford, was caught on Friday as he sunbathed by the swimming pool of a luxury villa on Spain's Costa Blanca.

Police snook up on him as he bathed, and later said that they recovered two handguns, 60 rounds of ammunition and a machete.

In February 2009, he was charged with a 2005 armed robbery against Royal Mail guards in Lancashire, along with 29-year-old Stephen Devalda.

During the trial he assaulted four security guards, jumped over the dock and escaped.

He was convicted in his absence of conspiracy to commit armed robbery, and placed on the Serious Organised Crime Agency's most wanted list.

The guards had been threatened with a gun, machete and baseball bat. One of them was assaulted before the robbers made off with £25,000.

Matt Burton, Head of Investigations at the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA), said: “Moran thought he could evade capture by fleeing to Spain, frequently changing his appearance and using false identities.

"Like his partner in crime Devalda and the other armed robbers on the hit-list discovered though, there’s no hiding place. SOCA and its partners have the capability to pursue criminals relentlessly, track them down, and put them behind bars.”

Devalda was arrested at a hotel in Marbella, Spain, in March 2011 following an operation involving SOCA, Greater Manchester Police and the Spanish authorities. He was jailed for nine years and eight months for conspiracy to commit armed robbery and seven months for breaching bail.