South West Wales

On-the-run paedophile David Hart arrested in Swansea

David Hart Image copyright South Wales Police

Police have arrested a paedophile who went missing on the same day he was convicted of 16 offences.

David Hart, from Morriston, Swansea, failed to show up at the city's crown court for the last day of his trial on Tuesday.

Hart, a 60-year-old taxi driver, was arrested by South Wales Police at an address in Morriston on Wednesday.

His victim was just 11 or 12 when he began a campaign of abuse, which lasted for 14 years.

Officers said the hunt for Hart was "immediately treated as a top priority".

Hart was convicted of 12 charges of rape, two of indecent assault, one of assault by penetration and one of assault occasioning actual bodily harm on Tuesday.

'Life-changing consequences'

Judge Geraint Walters said his victim had described "some of the gravest sexual offences".

He adjourned sentencing, saying Hart faced "many years" in prison.

During the trial, the court heard some of the abuse was carried out in front of a camera with hundreds of people watching at times.

Hart's victim said the abuse had caused extreme pain and she thought she may have been drugged.

She told police: "I blame myself. I never did enough to stop him. I had opportunities to stop him but I was too afraid. I hate myself. I feel disgusted I let him do these things. I dream of it."

Judge Walters said it "obviously leaves a permanent psychological mark" and "someone can't be subjected to this behaviour without life-changing consequences".

It was thought Hart been admitted to Morriston Hospital, but police discovered he was not there.