Officers from West Yorkshire Police’s Safer Roads and Neighbourhood Support team arrested the 35-year-old man in connection with the theft of more than 800 bronze plaques bearing the names of people that died at a Nazi concentration camp in the Czech Republic.
The man, a Czech national, was arrested after his Nissan Micra was stopped by officers on the eastbound carriageway of the M62 near Birstall Retail Park on Sunday, December 21.
The man’s details were run through the Police National Computer and officers discovered a European Arrest Warrant had been issued in connection with theft offences in the Czech Republic, which took place in 2008.
He is now set to be extradited.
He is one of three people wanted by the authorities in the Czech Republic in connection with the theft of 824 bronze name plaques that were stolen from graves a national cemetery in the town of Terezín.
The cemetery was part of the infamous Theresienstadt concentration camp in which thousands of people died, including a high number of children.
Supt Pat Casserly said: “This was a comprehensive piece of police work that has led to a wanted man being taken into custody in connection with a very serious crime in another country for which he will now stand trial.
“I believe this man has lived in different parts of the UK for some time and his arrest in West Yorkshire demonstrates the professional approach our officers take to their job and I’m pleased we’ve been able to play a small part of the investigation into what was an appalling crime.”