Hunt for missing suspect wanted on rape charges

WANTED Christopher Birch
WANTED Christopher Birch
Police

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THIS man is wanted by police for a string of sex attacks.

Police say the last known whereabouts of Christopher Alan Birch, 31, from the Gosport area, is when he boarded a Calais-bound ferry from Dover in May last year.

Despite their efforts to find him he is still at large almost 10 months later.

Birch is charged with four counts of raping a woman and two counts of causing a child to look at an image of sexual activity.

The offences are alleged to have happened in Portsmouth, Cosham and Waterlooville between 2004 and 2010.

Birch worked in the catering industry and police believe he may have fled to Spain to try and find work.

He also has connections to Salford.

PC Pete Eggins, from Hampshire police’s offender management team, said: ‘The last we know of Birch’s whereabouts is when he boarded a ferry from Dover to Calais, France, on May 17, 2011.

‘Since that time we’ve been completing enquiries in an attempt to locate him but to no avail.

‘We have been in contact with our European counterparts who are aware he is wanted by the UK authorities.’

Birch was charged with the sex offences in November 2010.

Six months later he was charged with failing to comply with the terms of a Sexual Offences Registration Order stating that he must keep the authorities informed about his wherabouts.

Birch was on bail and meant to appear at Portsmouth Crown Court on July 25 last year – but failed to turn up.

Now police have released this wanted picture in a bid to track him down.

PC Eggins added: ‘I am now appealing for help from the public and would like to hear from anyone who knows Birch or who recognises him and has information about his current whereabouts. All information will be treated in the strictest confidence.’

Birch is white, 5ft 7in and of a medium build with dark brown hair and hazel eyes.

He has a pierced left ear, a tattoo of MCFC on his left arm and a dragon on his back.

Call PC Eggins at Havant station on 101 or 999 in an emergency.