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Long IslandCrime

After 41 years, Long Island fugitive has been caught, police say

A convicted rapist was extradited from Arizona 41 years after he ran off from Long Island without serving his prison sentence, Suffolk police said Thursday night.

Todd Matus is now 62, but he was in his 20s in 1976, when he was sentenced in Suffolk County to 5 to 15 years in prison for first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy, police said Thursday. But he fled on bail, police said.

Suffolk Police Commissioner Timothy Sini has scheduled a 1 p.m. news conference Friday to talk about the case.

Last year, Matus was arrested in Flagstaff, Arizona, by law enforcement officers with the state transportation department, according to Flagstaff police. He was indicted in September and charged with attempted forgery, forgery and taking the identity of another, Arizona online court records show.

The state transportation department has police officers who look into driver’s license fraud, but a spokesman said details on how they arrested Matus were not immediately available.

But in a deal, Matus pleaded guilty to attempted forgery in April, served his sentence and was extradited to New York on Wednesday, authorities said. His Arizona attorneys were not immediately available Thursday night.

Suffolk police on Thursday night did not release other details, including information on the crime decades ago, why Matus was out on bail after sentencing and any sense of his exploits in the past four decades.

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