A British fugitive who is wanted in the UK to face child sex charges is set to be extradited from South Africa.
A Cape Town court was told Lee Tucker, who fled Britain 16 years ago and was arrested in the city last year after a request from UK authorities, “can’t run away”.
Magistrate Vusi Mhlanga ordered Tucker be sent to Pollsmoor prison, pending the justice minister signing his extradition.
Tucker, from Swansea, who was declared a fugitive from justice last year, has 15 days to appeal the magistrate’s ruling.
Before being led down to the court cells, a visibly-shaken Tucker shook hands with his legal team who wished him well.
State prosecutor Christopher Burke had told the court: “He seems to believe, somehow, that it is going to magically disappear. It’s not going to go away.
“And he cannot resolve it in South Africa. He has to go back.”
He argued that Tucker was liable for extradition and that there was enough evidence for him to be prosecuted in Britain.
But Tucker’s lawyer, Craig Webster, raised concerns about whether his client would get a fair trial in the UK.
Tucker was originally sentenced at Swindon Crown Court to eight years in prison in 2001.
But the sentence was overturned on a technicality and a retrial on 42 child sex charges was ordered.
Mr Webster said Tucker feared he would be prejudiced and discriminated against due to his sexual orientation and that the charges in his retrial differed from the original charge sheet.
This would result in his client’s rights being violated, he said.
Tucker’s offences are alleged to have occurred in the late 1980s and early 1990s.