Sex offender who fled abroad jailed

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A registered sex offender who absconded to Thailand while on police bail was jailed for five years at Leeds Crown Court yesterday.

Simon Paul Watson, 45, previously lived in Ilkley and was convicted in 2005 for possession of indecent images of children and sentenced to two years imprisonment.

In 2009 a further investigation was launched by West Yorkshire Police into similar offences and it was while on bail during this probe that he disappeared after failing to attend a bail appointment. Officers started enquiries to track him down and he was circulated as wanted for Breach of Sex Offender Notification Requirements and failing to answer Police Bail in addition to fresh offences relating to the possession of indecent images of children. Watson was tracked down to Bangkok. He was arrested for overstaying his visa in May and deported. Watson admitted the offences.