UK’s most wanted woman arrested while walking dogs in Spain

A fraudster dubbed the UK’s most wanted woman has been arrested in Spain after nearly a decade on the run.

Sarah Panitzke, 47, disappeared in May 2013 while on trial over her part in laundering cash from a £1billion mobile phone tax scam.

She was arrested while walking her dogs in Santa Barbara, Tarragona, on Sunday, the National Crime Agency (NCA) said.

Panitzke, originally from Fulford, York, was convicted and sentenced in her absence to eight years in jail.

The Spanish Guardia Civil said she was tracked down to a town near Barcelona in 2015, but she became aware of the police operation to arrest her, so disguised herself and managed to flee.

Last month, she was traced to the small town of Santa Barbara and put under surveillance until her arrest.

Extradition proceedings have started to bring her back to the UK, the NCA said.