A Slovakian man is in custody today after an international manhunt to trace the rapist who left an 18-year-old woman for dead after a brutal attack in Leeds.
Police in West Yorkshire say they are working on bringing the 21-year-old back to Leeds following a three-month inquiry over the rape and attempted murder of a woman in Beeston.
It is understood that DNA evidence played a key part in the investigation, which saw the man arrested by local police in the Kosice area of Slovakia yesterday.
Det Supt Nick Wallen, who is leading the investigation into the attack, said: “The man is currently in custody in Slovakia and we will now be pursuing the legal process with the aim of getting him extradited back to the United Kingdom to be charged to appear at court.”
The victim of the attack was grabbed and dragged into a garden as she stood at a bus stop on Beeston Road on the evening of March 6. She was battered with a rock and raped before her assailant walked away.
The woman suffered serious head injuries and a fractured pelvis and is only thought to have escaped with her life because her scarf and a hood she was wearing reduced the impact of the blows.
Slovakian police swooped on the suspect after West Yorkshire detectives secured a European Arrest Warrant.
Speaking about the investigation, Det Supt Wallen added: “The European Arrest Warrant process requires that police forces are in a position to charge any suspect they are seeking.
“To that end we consulted the Crown Prosecution Service before applying to a district judge at Leeds Magistrates Court for the European Arrest Warrant.
“Once the warrant was granted, we liaised with the Slovakian police through the National Crime Agency to secure the arrest of this man.
“We are very grateful to the Slovakian authorities for their assistance.”
West Yorkshire Police’s investigation into the attack involved more than 100 officers.