A child sex offender who was due to be sentenced for failing to tell police he was going to Turkey failed to turn up at court.

Blackburn Magistrates' Court heard the next time Afraz Asif came to the attention of the authorities was after he was arrested at Heathrow Airport, after being escorted back from Spain by two Spanish police officers.

Asif, 40, of Woodlea Road, Blackburn, pleaded guilty to three breaches of Sex Offender Register notification requirements, breach of post sentence supervision and failing to surrender to bail.

He was committed in custody to Preston Crown Court to be sentenced.

Uzma Kausar, prosecuting, said Asif had been convicted of sexual assault on a girl under the age of 13 in 2015.

He was made subject to Sex Offender Registration requirements for 10 years.

As a result, he was required to tell the police at least seven days in advance of any intended period of foreign travel.

He had failed to do this before travelling to Turkey and Spain and had committed a further breach by not notifying the police of a change of address.

Mr Kausar added: "We don't know how long he was abroad for, but we do know he has not been supervised for nearly nine months."

Ian Huggan, in mitigation, said his client had previously complied with the requirements and had correctly registered for foreign travel on five previous occasions.

"The problem seems to be that he became involved with illegal drugs and his life spiralled out of control," said Mr Huggan.

"He was sent to Spain by his family to get help there.

"He knows there were certain steps he should have taken before leaving."