Man extradited to Lithuania suspected of gang murder
- Credit: Archant
A Lowestoft man has been extradited to Lithuania in connection with a gang murder more than a decade ago.
Arturas Kliauga was arrested near to his Cathcart Street home after a surveillance operation in July 2019.
A European Arrest Warrant had been issued by the National Crime Agency for the 37-year-old, with Kliauga extradited to Lithuania in February.
A spokesperson for the office of Lithuania’s prosecutor general has now confirmed the charge relates to an incident in 2007, involving murder, robbery and extortion, while acting in a criminal gang.
They said: “Kliauga is suspected of the following: while acting in an organised group with members of an armed criminal association, acting in disorderly conduct, he murdered a man, committed robbery of high-value property by using physical violence and committed high-value property extortion by using physical violence. Kliauga is held in custody.
“The crimes were committed in 2007.”
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Officers from Suffolk Police’s East Scorpion team arrested the 37-year-old on Love Road, in Lowestoft, at around 9.30pm on July 17.
At the time of his arrest, Kliauga was found in possession of 1kg of cannabis, with an estimated worth of around £11,000.
Speaking through a Lithuanian translator, Kliauga appeared, via a video link with HMP Wandsworth in London, at Great Yarmouth Magistrates’ Court on August 28, where he denied a charge of possession with intent to supply the class B drug.
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Kliauga, however, pleaded guilty on the first day of his trial at Ipswich Crown Court on January 15.
He was jailed for 10 weeks, and remanded in custody while awaiting an extradition hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ Court.
Kliauga consented to the extradition and was taken back to Lithuania on February 19, 2020.
As with the UK, many criminal trials in Lithuania have been postponed amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
In a post on Twitter after the arrest, Suffolk Police officers warned: “We are watching you.”
They said: “Very long shift for #EastScorpion in Lowestoft. Male arrested on European Arrest Warrant and found with around £11,000 worth of cannabis.”