YORK’S most wanted criminal has been arrested after being on the run since October 2018.

Alfred Philip Dear (snr), 46, was arrested in Swaffham by Norfolk Constabulary on Saturday (February 22) and is due to appear at Leeds Crown Court this afternoon(Monday, February 24).

Dear, previously of York and Hull, was the head of an organised crime gang who pedalled heroin and cocaine in York. 

He was found guilty in his absence of conspiracy to supply class A drugs on 26 October 2018.

After failing to turn up at court for sentencing in December 2018, he was sentenced to 21 years’ imprisonment which also included three years for a raid on a cash machine in East Yorkshire. 

An investigation was launched to locate him including several public appeals for information about his whereabouts.

In December 2018 The Press reported that Dear was one of 11 members of a crime syndicate responsible for a huge heroin operation in York and Malton who were jailed for a total of 102 years and six months between them.

The family-run enterprise was headed by convicted heroin dealer Dear, and he and his three sons had a turnover of tens of thousands of pounds a month, Leeds Crown Court heard at the time.

Dear went on the run from a 21-year sentence with a reward offered for his capture, and two of his sons Alfred Dear, 26, and Levi Dear, 24, after currently serving 12-year sentences alongside eight other jailed gang members. 

The third son involved in the gang, Callum Dear, died before he could be charged.
Six police officers and civilians won a judge’s commendations for bringing them to justice.

Judge Rodney Jameson QC said by May and June 2016 Alfred Philip Dear was bringing a kilo of heroin every two or three weeks into York. 

The father was on prison parole from a previous sentence for dealing and had used his experience to equip his new operation with anti-detection techniques.
“He involved others and most shamefully, his own sons,” said the judge.