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Child Rape Fugitive Wanted In New Bedford Captured In South Carolina

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Federal agents and Massachusetts State Troopers assigned to the FBI-Boston Division’s Bank Robbery/Violent Crimes Task Force recently developed information indicating that a former New Bedford man wanted for child rape was living in South Carolina.

Working with the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, the Violent Crimes Task Force determined that JOHN RODRIGUEZ, 56, was living with a family member in the city of Anderson. South Carolina officers conducted surveillance of multiple addresses throughout the past weekend and into Monday. On Monday morning, officers observed a man matching RODRIGUEZ’s description leave a residence and walk to a neighbor’s house. The South Carolina officers approached him, confirmed he was RODRIGUEZ, and placed him under arrest without incident as a fugitive from justice.

RODRIGUEZ is the subject of a 2002 New Bedford District Court warrant charging him with rape of a child with force, indecent assault on a child under age 14, and assault with intent to rape a child. The alleged rape and indecent assault occurred in August 2000.

RODRIGUEZ was transported to the Anderson County Detention Center, where he was booked as a fugitive from justice. A fingerprint query provided additional confirmation of the man’s identity as RODRIGUEZ.

Members of the Boston-division Violent Crimes Task Force notified the Bristol County District Attorney, the State Police Detective Unit for Bristol County, and the New Bedford Police Department of RODRIGUEZ’s capture. The district attorney’s office will arrange the suspect’s extradition to Massachusetts to face prosecution on the charges in the warrant.

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