Fugitive Brit arrested in Barcelona over gangland double murder plot

A British man has been held in Barcelona over his alleged role in a gangland murder plot.

Jamie Rothwell, 33, was arrested by Spanish police officers at an apartment block on Sunday morning as part of an investigation into warring crime gangs in Salford.

He has been wanted for questioning by Greater Manchester Police (GMP) for seven months over allegedly plotting to murder two men in 2015.

A European Arrest Warrant was issued in October for his detention on suspicion of conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm.

National Crime Agency (NCA) investigators and international liaison officers in Spain traced Rothwell, who went on to appear in a Spanish court on Monday.

He was remanded in custody and will face extradition proceedings at a later date.

Matt Horne, NCA deputy director of investigations, said: ‘The arrest of a fugitive over exceptionally serious allegations is a great result.

‘It’s an example of how the agency and our international partners work to protect the public and even during the coronavirus, when there have been greater hurdles to overcome, the NCA has remained relentless in leading the UK’s fight against serious organised crime.’

Detective Chief Inspector Carl Jones, of GMP’s major incident team, said: ‘This arrest is part of Greater Manchester Police’s ongoing investigation into a dispute between two rival organised crime groups in Salford in 2015.

‘Operation Leopard is a collaborative operation which utilises specialists from GMP’s major incident team and serious and organised crime group.

‘This arrest wouldn’t have been possible without an excellent working relationship between GMP, the Crown Prosecution Service, National Crime Agency and the Spanish authorities.’

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