An elderly man accused of swindling several old ladies has been arrested in Levin after being on the run for almost a year.

An anonymous tipoff led to the arrest of William Edward Harding, 77, in Levin on Wednesday.

Harding failed to appear in the Whanganui District Court on August 9.

He faced two charges of deception and one of causing loss by deception, relating to three elderly Whanganui women he had befriended.

There had been several sightings of Harding since he disappeared in August.

In December police said he stayed under an alias with an unwitting couple in Wellington, telling them he had lost his house in the 7.8 magnitude Kaikoura quake in November.

Sergeant Nick Brunger said this week there had been several sightings in Wellington since then.

But it was "a surprise" to find Harding in Levin, Brunger said.

Harding is originally from Whanganui. Complaints were first laid against him in March last year, when three women, all aged over 60, accusing him of duping them out of thousands of dollars.

Formal complaints were laid against him and in May last year he handed himself in to police. He had pleaded not guilty to charges before failing to appear in court in August.

"There was further information this year that he was still in the Wellington area but Levin was a surprise," Brunger said.

Harding appeared in Levin District Court on Thursday, and was remanded in custody.

He will reappear on May 23 to face the original charges.

Brunger said no charges had yet been laid over Harding's time on the run.