A DANGEROUS sex fiend who sparked a full-scale manhunt when he went on the run was caught by police this week.
Paedophile Michael Andrew Wilson, 44, was caught in Kirkham after a three-day search.
It is understand a vigilant member of the public, who had seen and heard press appeals for the missing man, spotted him and reported it to the police.
Wilson, described as softly-spoken and with a Yorkshire accent, had been living in Blackburn since last Friday following his release from prison, after serving part of a four-and-a-half-year sentence for an offence committed in Lancaster.
Police were notified after he failed to return to the premises on Monday evening and a hunt was launched in a bid to find Wilson who was in breach of his prison licence.
It was not the first time that Wilson had disappeared.
In 1999 he was the subject of a massive manhunt after he went on the run from Accrington and became the first person in the country to breach a sex offenders' order by speaking to a three-year-old boy.
He had been a temporary resident at Highfield House bail hostel but went missing after being put unaccompanied on a train at Accrington Railway Station. He was later arrested in Blackpool.
When he went missing this week, Wilson had not been seen since 1.30pm on Monday and police were desperate to track him down.
Shortly before he was spotted, Detective Inspector Paul Withers from the Public Protection Unit at Accrington Police Station warned Wilson was a danger to the public, adding: "He should not be approached and it is important that we find him quickly."
They initially believed Wilson could be anywhere in the North West or Yorkshire and issued a full description of the paedophile in a bid to find him.