(Trinidad Express) United States law enforcement is on the hunt for a violent fugitive believed to be hiding in Trinidad and Tobago.
The man who has been identified by the US Embassy in Port of Spain as Sean Lopes, 46, is believed to be hiding in this country, the Embassy said in a press statement yesterday which showed three photographs of Lopes, who is described as a violent fugitive.
Lopes was sentenced to 15 years in jail on charges of kidnapping and attempting to murder his ex-girlfriend who is the niece of a US Federal Judge.
In 2008, Interpol in Guyana issued a wanted bulletin for Lopes who is said to have Guyanese and Dutch nationality for alleged kidnapping and other crimes involving the use of weapons and explosives.
Lopes is said to be 5-feet-8, 140 pounds and has black hair, is light-skinned, with brown hair and black eyes, and is usually clean shaven, but sometimes has facial hair.
He was born in Guyana on February 12, 1966, but also uses July 6, 1970. Lopes is also known to speak with a Guyanese accent and uses aliases such as Sean H Lopes, Shane M Lopes, and Sean Hendrick Lopes. He is said to have ties in this country, Guyana, Canada, Bahamas, and the Dominican Republic.
In 2006, Lopes, including eight other men and one woman were labelled by the New York Police Department as the city’s most wanted fugitives.
A reward is being offered for information leading to Lopes’ capture, the US Embassy said.
Lopes became obsessed with his ex-girlfriend, Amanda Hopkins, and was furious that she had dumped him after discovering he was ten years older than he had claimed, was married and the father of a young girl.
Prosecutors claimed Lopes sneaked into the 22-year-old Bronx teacher’s Upper East Side apartment in New York on the last day of school, June 25, 2004. Stashed in his duffel bag were a pair of black gloves, a black ski mask, a BB gun tricked-out to look like a .9-mm pistol, a stun gun and a serrated knife.
When Hopkins came home at 12.30 a.m., Lopes attacked and choked her and threatened the eighth-grade math teacher with the gun. He terrorised Hopkins — the niece of a federal magistrate in Florida — and threatened to kill her and then commit suicide.
Police later stormed the apartment and found Lopes holding a butcher’s knife to Hopkins’ throat. He was subsequently challenged by a K-9 dog and taken into custody. Lopes, an eighth-grade science teacher, was charged with attempted murder and attempted kidnapping.
His wife put up the family’s house to secure his $250,000 bail, but Lopes jumped bail on November 16, 2004, and hasn’t been seen since. On May 20, 2005, Lopes was tried, convicted, and sentenced in absentia to 15 years in prison. It is believed that he travelled to this country using his brother’s travel documents.