Fugitive Kirk Bradley captured in Amsterdam

 

One of the UK's most wanted crimelords has been captured in Holland.

Kirk Bradley, who had been on the run since fleeing a Manchester prison van last July, was arrested with his uncle in Amsterdam last night, the Serious Organised Crime Agency said.

He is expected to be returned to the UK to serve a life jail term for leading an underworld gang responsible for a series of shootings, and leaving a hand grenade on the front wall of Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish's home.

Fugitive Bradley was wearing flip-flops, shorts and a T-shirt when officers raided his luxury apartment in the Bijlmer region of Amsterdam.

He is expected to face an extradition hearing in the Dutch city later today, Soca said.

An international search had been going for months since he escaped the van with Anthony Downes while en route for trial.

Downes was also arrested in Holland and is fighting extradition proceedings after both were convicted in their absence earlier this year.

Ian Milne, head of European operations for the Serious Organised Crime Agency, said: "Like his partner in crime Anthony Downes discovered only a few weeks ago, there is no such place as a safe haven. Kirk Bradley was shocked when officers burst through the door of his luxury apartment in Amsterdam. He had no idea we were on to him.

"Joint working with Merseyside Police and the Amsterdam police has led to the capture of these two violent and dangerous individuals.

"They are now back behind bars where they belong. This shows that criminals who flee to other countries are not beyond our reach."

A specialist arrest team from the Amsterdam police arrested him on a British-issued European arrest warrant.

Arno Julsing, chief of detectives for the Amsterdam police, said: "What a successful arrest.

"The collaboration with our British colleagues has so far been fantastic. Together we have managed to apprehend many dozens of dangerous criminals in the last couple of years.

"Our approach works and we have found that the number of fugitives hiding in Amsterdam is decreasing. Our message 'Amsterdam is not the place to be' has apparently been heard. Those who still don't get it will be traced, arrested and handed over to the British authorities."

Bradley and Downes, both 26, face a minimum tariff of 22 years after being convicted at Woolwich Crown Court.

Detective Superintendent Richie Davies, of Merseyside Police, hailed the "excellent arrest".

He said: "The capture of Bradley, and Downes before him, underlines Merseyside Police's commitment to work with other authorities to ensure that serious criminals have no place to hide.

"The sentence handed down to Bradley highlights the real risk that he posed to the people of Merseyside and beyond. We will act on all information provided to take dangerous criminals from our streets, which we cannot do without the assistance of the community."

Bradley and Downes, who described themselves as blood brothers, ran a criminal network between 2009 and 2010.

Three gang members who worked for them admitted possessing firearms and causing criminal damage with intent to endanger life and were jailed in March.

Gary Wilson, 27, of Promenade in Southport, was sentenced to a minimum of 16 years; Joseph Farrell, 23, of Brandearth Hey in Stockbridge Village, Knowsley, will serve a minimum of 12 years, and Craig Riley, 25, of Boode Croft, also in Stockbridge Village, will serve a minimum of 14 years.

The gang carried out shootings and grenade attacks and operated on behalf of others in the Liverpool underworld.

The grenade was left on Mr Dalglish's front wall in July 2009, when he was not Liverpool's manager, but it was not intended for him.

Bradley's uncle Raymond, from Woolton, was arrested in central Amsterdam for possession of cocaine with intent to supply, the Merseyside force added.

PA

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
News
newsAnother week, another dress controversy on the internet
Life and Style
Marie had fake ID, in the name of Johanna Koch, after she evaded capture by the Nazis in wartime Berlin
historyOne woman's secret life as a Jew in wartime Berlin
Life and Style
Scientist have developed a test which predicts whether you'll live for another ten years
health
News
news... and what your reaction to the creatures above says about you
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

The difference between America and Israel? There isn’t one

Netanyahu knows he can get away with anything in America, says Robert Fisk
Families clubbing together to build their own affordable accommodation

Do It Yourself approach to securing a new house

Community land trusts marking a new trend for taking the initiative away from developers
Head of WWF UK: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

David Nussbaum: We didn’t send Cameron to the Arctic to see green ideas freeze

The head of WWF UK remains sanguine despite the Government’s failure to live up to its pledges on the environment
Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Author Kazuo Ishiguro on being inspired by shoot-outs and samurai

Set in a mythologised 5th-century Britain, ‘The Buried Giant’ is a strange beast
With money, corruption and drugs, this monk fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’

Money, corruption and drugs

The monk who fears Buddhism in Thailand is a ‘poisoned fruit’
America's first slavery museum established at Django Unchained plantation - 150 years after slavery outlawed

150 years after it was outlawed...

... America's first slavery museum is established in Louisiana
Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

Kelly Clarkson: How I snubbed Simon Cowell and become a Grammy-winning superstar

The first 'American Idol' winner on how she manages to remain her own woman – Jane Austen fascination and all
Tony Oursler on exploring our uneasy relationship with technology with his new show

You won't believe your eyes

Tony Oursler's new show explores our uneasy relationship with technology. He's one of a growing number of artists with that preoccupation
Ian Herbert: Peter Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

Moores must go. He should never have been brought back to fail again

The England coach leaves players to find solutions - which makes you wonder where he adds value, says Ian Herbert
War with Isis: Fears that the looming battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

The battle for Mosul will unleash 'a million refugees'

Aid agencies prepare for vast exodus following planned Iraqi offensive against the Isis-held city, reports Patrick Cockburn
Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

Yvette Cooper: We can't lose the election. There's too much on the line

The shadow Home Secretary on fighting radical Islam, protecting children, and why anyone in Labour who's thinking beyond May must 'sort themselves out'
A bad week for the Greens: Leader Natalie Bennett's 'car crash' radio interview is followed by Brighton council's failure to set a budget due to infighting

It's not easy being Green

After a bad week in which its leader had a public meltdown and its only city council couldn't agree on a budget vote, what next for the alternative party? It's over to Caroline Lucas to find out
Gorillas nearly missed: BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter

Gorillas nearly missed

BBC producers didn't want to broadcast Sir David Attenborough's famed Rwandan encounter
Downton Abbey effect sees impoverished Italian nobles inspired to open their doors to paying guests for up to €650 a night

The Downton Abbey effect

Impoverished Italian nobles are opening their doors to paying guests, inspired by the TV drama
China's wild panda numbers have increased by 17% since 2003, new census reveals

China's wild panda numbers on the up

New census reveals 17% since 2003