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Lifeguard charged with kidnap and rape of 10-year-old he groomed online

Gareth Vincent Hall's mugshot via Lane County Jail
Gareth Vincent Hall's mugshot via Lane County Jail

A Welsh lifeguard is behind bars in the USA after he was arrested for the kidnap and rape of a 10-year-old he met online.

Gareth Vincent Hall was arrested this week by police from Oregon when he landed in Chicago's O'Hare Airport.

Hall is accused of travelling to the town of Eugene, Oregon in April of this year where he took a 10-year-old he met online to a hotel room.

It is thought that Hall had flown home to Wales after spending four days in the US in April and that he had returned this week to meet a different girl.

He has been charged with three counts of rape in the first degree, two counts of sodomy in the first degree, and one count of kidnapping in the first degree relating to his April visit to the US.

Investigating officer Jed McGuire is quoted in the Mail: 'Hall met the girl through an online chat program. Hall and the girl spoke for two months before meeting in early April when he picked her up in a rental car and took her to a hotel.

'One of the things we hope to answer is why he travelled so far to meet with one person. One might read into it that he wanted to stay away from his home area. That's my speculation at this point.'

A police spokesperson also said: 'The Eugene Police Department is continuing to investigate the full range and scope of the suspect's activities. At this time, we don't believe there are any other victims in the local area.'

Authorities in Wales are also concerned as during his day job at a Leisure Centre in Caernarfon Hall comes into contact with children who are receiving swimming lessons.