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Rapist captured in Maine after 34 years returns to Massachusetts

Fugitive rapist Gary Alan Irving is seen in a 1978 booking photo from the Massachusetts State Police. REUTERS/Massachusetts State Police/Han
Fugitive rapist Gary Alan Irving is seen in a 1978 booking photo from the Massachusetts State Police. REUTERS/Massachusetts State Police/Han

By Daniel Lovering

BOSTON (Reuters) - A man who fled Massachusetts after being convicted of rape 34 years ago and was arrested in Maine last week, has been returned to the state for sentencing, prosecutors said on Tuesday.

Gary Irving, 52, was convicted in 1979 in Norfolk Superior Court in Massachusetts for crimes committed the previous year, but fled to Maine after a judge released him so he could make arrangements before the sentencing proceeding.

At the time, Irving was facing a possible life sentence on three counts of rape and three counts of kidnapping, said David Traub, a spokesman for the Norfolk County District Attorney's Office.

Traub said Irving appeared in court in Maine on Monday before being handed over to Massachusetts police, who transported him to Norfolk Superior Court. He said Irving was ordered held without bail and his next court appearance was scheduled for April 12.

Irving became one of the most-wanted fugitives in Massachusetts, and a decades-long manhunt ended on Wednesday night when police arrested him at his home in Gorham, Maine.

He had been living quietly under the assumed name Gregg Irving.

Prosecutors expect Irving to be sentenced on the original rape and kidnapping charges in the coming weeks, the spokesman said.

Police and FBI agents said they discovered numerous guns at Irving's residence and that he will face illegal firearms possession charges and charges of being a fugitive.

(Editing by Scott Malone, Cynthia Johnston and Grant McCool)

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