August 1 2014 Latest news:
Friday, June 27, 2014
A fugitive Latvian rapist has been jailed for knocking a woman unconscious after trying to remove her trousers during a drinking session in an Ipswich flat.
Uldys Radionov, of Riverside Road, Ipswich, is the sixth European rapist in the past two years to be discovered in Suffolk after police made checks following their arrests for alleged offences in the county.
Radionov fled Latvia after being released on licence while serving a sentence for aggravated rape.
The 21-year-old entered Britain without the authorities being aware of his criminal background.
Police learned of his conviction as a 16-year-old at Latgale Regional Court in Latvia on February 2, 2009, when he was arrested in March.
Radionov was jailed for 32 weeks after he admitted actual bodily harm when he appeared before Ipswich Crown Court.
The court heard he was wanted on a European Arrest Warrant after fleeing Latvia.
Radionov is to be arrested by Latvian authorities so he can serve the rest of his rape sentence.
At Radionov’s assault sentencing Judge David Goodin recorded his concern the Latvian-national had a serious sexual assault conviction in his homeland five years ago.
On January 18 this year Radionov was drinking in a flat with another man and a woman, who dozed off.
During the course of the drinking session Radionov is said to have attempted to remove the woman’s trousers.
She resisted and was punched unconscious.
Radionov was arrested while working in Great Blakenham on March 17.
He subsequently appeared before South East Suffolk Magistrates Court where an application was granted to make him subject to the restrictions of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.
Ipswich MP Ben Gummer and East of England MEP Vicky Ford have been waging a campaign to ensure all the EU countries put offenders with convictions for serious crimes, or those wanted on European Arrest Warrants, on a database which can be accessed by border officials.
Progress has been made since their battle began two years ago, although Mr Gummer said the speed at which it is happening is a worry.
He added many countries in the EU do not have national criminal databases, citing Germany which keeps computerised records state by state as an example.
Mr Gummer said: “We have the most advanced database system of any country in the world. Very few countries have a sex offenders’ register.”
“Mr Radionov’s case is the same problem we have encountered before.
“Vicky and I are working hard on this and have been doing so for some time as a policy issue.
“When we get the system working which we have agreed we should be able to stop people such as Mr Radionov (entering the UK) because of the European Arrest Warrant.
“Secondly it will flag up serious offences committed in out member states.
“Although this was agreed some time ago it has still not been implemented in the European Union and we need to make this happen quickly.
“I am concerned about the speed at which other member states are going.
“The Home Office is aware of the problem and it is hopefully, element by element, putting in the procedures on our borders which will make it hard for people like this convicted criminal to enter the country.”