The Thai authorities have arrested a US man, who fled the United States about 19 years to avoid prosecution on charges of sexually abusing a boy 13 years old, according to the Vermilion County authorities sheriff.
Dennis G. Catron, 60, was arrested in Bangkok, Thailand on Wednesday by the Thai police, immigration authorities and U.S. embassy officials in that country, according to Vermilion County Sheriff Pat Hartshorn.
“We have been actively pursuing him since he left,” Hartshorn said, adding that the department has always believed that was in Thailand since his disappearance in 1992, while bonds. In 1994, he was tried, convicted and sentenced in absentia to 20 years in prison in the Vermilion County Circuit Court.
“We have not given up on this,” said Hartshorn. “We worked with several federal agencies to try to locate it, and we are happy that the U.S. Marshals at the time were able to obtain the cooperation of the Thai government.”
Hartshorn said Catron was working in the schools teaching English in Thailand and was arrested outside a condominium that was living and admitted he was Dennis Catron and was wanted in the United States.
Hartshorn said Catron will be extradited to Vermilion County, the sheriff’s department to arrest for transfer to the Illinois Department of Corrections.
Catron was arrested in June 1991 at his home in Hoopeston child’s father and stepmother of Ludlow filed a complaint with the police department of Hoopeston, then went home and found the child Catron there. The charges accused of sexually abusing the child Catron for six months in 1991.
Before his arrest in Vermilion County, Catron was the focus of an investigation in Champaign County, which eventually led to his dismissal as superintendent in Ludlow in March 1991, just months before his arrest in Vermilion County.
Finally, charges were filed against Catron in Champaign as well, which was charged in July 1991 on charges of sexually abusing two children Ludlow: the same 13-year-old was the victim in the case of Vermilion, and a boy 6 years-old child, too. He was acquitted later in Champaign County on charges related to the 6 years of age.
About five months after his arrest, Catron was free on bail on charges in both counties, if not presented for trial on charges of sexual abuse in Vermilion County. A warrant was issued for his immediate arrest. Also failed to appear at a later date in Champaign County.
The authorities searched for months with no luck until July 1992 when Catron gave the Vermilion County authorities.
At that time, the Champaign County Prosecutor and attorney Catron State defense took a plea deal that would have kept Catron in prison, but Judge John Delamar refused to go along with the guilty plea because he was afraid that accepting a guilty plea on lesser charges in Champaign County Catron prevent being tried for more serious charges in Vermilion County. Rejection Catron allowed to post bond again, which made the August 19, 1992 – posted $ 20,000 cash for all outstanding charges in both counties.
And a month later, in September 1992, again failed to appear at a court date in Champaign County and was never officially seen again until his arrest this week.
State Attorney’s office Vermilion County moved forward with his prosecution anyway, and in May 1994, Vermilion County jury convicted him in absentia, and in August 1994, was sentenced to more than 20 years.
Hartshorn said he expects the U.S. Marshals Catron to transport from Thailand to U.S. Once the extradition process is completed, and the sheriff’s department custody where they will land. He can also be an appearance in the local circuit court for some “cleaning” in bonds and other issues before he is sent to prison to begin his sentence.