Police in the UK have launched an international appeal after an Indian-origin convicted paedophile fled to India on the eve of his trial.
Vijesh Kooriyil, 29, was convicted of raping a six-year-old boy at his home in Oxford in 2010 and 2011.
Kooyiril, who came to the UK on a student visa is thought to have fled to Delhi last Monday, a day before he was due to appear at Oxford Crown Court. He was convicted in absentia.
Sentencing him to a minimum 12 years in prison, judge Peter Ross branded the abuse “appalling” and said Kooriyil had ‘degraded and humiliated’ the boy who was abused several times a week over a two year period.
Prosecutor David Smith said the crimes only came to light after the boy started learning about sex at school and realised what had happened to him.
He added: “He started to feel ashamed about what had happened to him, it made him feel angry and confused. He is very suspicious, not with children, but with adults. He cannot understand why he did such a thing to him.”
Kooriyil was arrested in Scotland then released on unconditional bail because he had no previous cautions or convictions.
His passport was not seized because his court bail was unconditional, police said.
He was summoned by post to attend Oxford Crown Court for trial and attended on November 13 last year to deny both charges.
But he failed to turn up on Tuesday, having ‘misled his solicitors’ and fled the country, before the judge issued a warrant for his arrest.
Police are believed to be liaising with authorities in India to bring Kooriyil back to the UK.