Revelations that a Latvian wanted for questioning by police over a missing girl has a murder conviction in his home country highlights the folly of EU open borders, said UKIP deputy leader Paul Nuttall.

Arnis Zalkalns served seven years in prison for murder in Latvia, after being convicted in 1998.

Police now want to speak to the 41-year-old builder following the disappearance of  14-year-old Alice Gross, who was last seen on August 28 using the same canal route in West London that Zalkalns, who was reported missing on September 5, was known to use

“Mr Zalkalns may know absolutely nothing about this teenager’s disappearance but the point is he should never have been allowed into the UK in the first place,” said Mr Nuttall, North West MEP.

“But, of course, as Latvia is a member of the EU, he had every right to move here and our border agency is powerless to turn back migrants from member states regardless of their criminal history.

“This particular case is a striking example of the folly of open borders and why we must control who comes into our country and be able to turn back those felt undesirable,” said Mr Nuttall.

Mr Zalkalns came to the UK in 2004. In 2009 he was arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting a 14 year-old girl in London, but no further action was taken.

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