16 Aug 2012

British police seek NZ prison escapee

2:04 pm on 16 August 2012

A man who escaped from a New Zealand prison 11 years ago is being sought by British police in connection with a murder inquiry.

The body of Michael Polding, 62, was was discovered in his flat in Brighton, East Sussex, on 16 July. He had sustained serious chest injuries and Sussex police are still trying to determine when he died.

Police are seeking Ricardo Pisano, a South African who is also known as Brandon Victor Pillay and uses the nicknames 'Ree' or 'Ricky'.

He escaped from Tongariro/Rangipo Prison in August 2001 while serving a 15 month sentence for extortion.

The Department of Corrections says he is the only New Zealand prisoner listed as having escaped from jail and never recaptured.

The department says Pillay escaped with another prisoner, who was recaptured in Australia in 2006 and extradited back to New Zealand.

Tongariro/Rangipo Prison, in the centre of the North Island, holds minimum and low security prisoners. The department says many work on the large farm and forestry operations on the prison grounds.