Crime

Manatee sex offender arrested after several years on the lam

MANATEE - A convicted sex offender wanted for several years by authorities in Manatee and Pinellas counties for failing to properly register as a sexual offender has been arrested, according to the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

Christopher Drouillard, 45, was arrested Friday at Ft. Lauderdale International Airport and was being held at the Broward County jail.

Drouillard was first classified as a sexual offender after he was convicted in 2001 in Charlotte County for attempted sexual battery of a child under 12 and lewd and lascivious upon a child under 16. He was properly registered in Manatee County until 2005, when officials discovered he had moved from his last known address and could not be located, according to Manatee officials.

A warrant for his arrest was issued, and investigators later learned Drouillard was working for a contractor in Afghanistan. The company fired Drouillard and flew him back to Florida, where he was arrested on Feb. 13, 2006. He bonded out and immediately moved to Pinellas County, according to a news release.

He was properly registered but then he failed to show up for trial in Manatee County on the failing to register charge. Pinellas County officials also learned he had moved and could not be located. They also issued an arrest warrant for Drouillard.

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