A man who robbed a gas station of 156 yuan (approximately $24) in 2009 has allegedly been living like a hermit in a remote cave for around 14 years to evade the authorities.
The man, identified as Liu Moufu of China’s Hubei province, robbed a local establishment in the city of Enshi along with his brother-in-law and another accomplice. According to some local reports, they also stole two mobile phones and a miner’s lamp.
Liu, who was in his late 30s at the time, looked for a place to hide after hearing about the arrests.
According to reports, he decided to live in a small remote cave he had found on a cliff opposite his hometown, a village in Enshi. The cave is around 10 kilometers (approximately 6.2 miles) away from the nearest human settlement.
As a fugitive, Liu allegedly managed to survive by hunting and scavenging for food. He also reportedly admitted to stealing vegetables and meat from his old village and occasionally meeting up with his family members. To protect himself from wild animals, Liu lived with several stray dogs.
While Liu had close calls with the police over the years, he managed to evade getting caught during his self-imposed exile.
He did, however, miss important family events, including his father’s funeral and his son’s wedding.
On Feb. 12, Liu turned himself in to the police and told investigators that he wishes to return to his family and live a normal life.
Now over 50 years old, Liu cooperated with the police and showed them the cave he had lived in. He told investigators that he now regrets hiding for over a decade.
Because his crime in 2009 involved the use of weapons, Liu still faces a minimum of three years and a maximum of 10 years in prison.