Daniel Abed Khalife news: Wandsworth prison escape ‘pre-planned’ as police confirm first sighting of fugitive

Prison escape of Daniel Abed Khalife was ‘clearly pre-planned’, Met Police Chief says

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The first sighting of fugitive Daniel Abed Khalife has been confirmed by the police after a witness has come forward.

A member of the public said they saw a man resembling Khalife walking away from the BidFood delivery van that had stopped near the south entrance to the Wandsworth roundabout, on Wednesday morning.

On the third day of the nationwide manhunt, Commissioner Mark Rowley said the escape was “clearly pre-planned” – pointing to “the fact he could strap himself onto the bottom of the wagon”, referring to the delivery van Khalife used to flee.

Asked if police are looking into whether it was an “inside job”, he told LBC: “It is a question. Did anyone inside the prison help him? Other prisoners, guard staff?”

The Met chief said 150 officers are involved with help from other forces and Border Force and confirmed: “Richmond Park is one of the areas that we’ve been looking.”

However, the force has previously said it is “absolutely possible” that Khalife – who is accused of planting fake bombs at a military base before he allegedly “graduated” to attempted spying for Iran – has already left the country.

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Foreign secretary declined to comment if confident Khalife would be found

Earlier today, foreign secretary James Cleverly declined to comment on whether he was confident that escaped terror suspect Daniel Khalife will be found.

“We do have fantastic security services and police services. I don’t think it would be useful or credible for me to to speculate.

“The important thing is that we let the police, the investigators do their work,” he told ITV’s Good Morning Britain programme.

Holly Evans8 September 2023 21:30


Timeline of events around hunt for terror suspect Daniel Khalife

Terror suspect Daniel Khalife had been in prison for more than seven months before he escaped.

The search for the 21-year-old – featuring help from the Border Force and police officers around the country – is in its third day.

Here is a timeline of the events leading to the hunt for Khalife:

Holly Evans8 September 2023 20:45


Prison Officers’ Association chair says escape is example of budget cuts

Mark Fairhurst, the national chair of the Prison Officers’ Association, Mark Fairhurst, spoke about the prospect of an “inside job” at Wandsworth prison.

He said he could not rule out corruption or bribery, but paid tribute to the staff at Wandsworth prison.

“We can’t rule anything out, but what I will say about the staff of Wandsworth – they are an amazing group of people doing a fantastic job on behalf of society in extremely stressful and difficult circumstances,” he said.

He pointed to the escape as an example of government underfunding towards prisons.

“It highlights the crisis we are in because of the constant budget cuts by this government since 2010,” he said.

Holly Evans8 September 2023 20:20


WATCH: CCTV footage of delivery van used in Khalife’s escape

The Met Police have released CCTV of the BidFood delivery van used by Daniel Khalife to make his escape

Newly released footage shows BidFood van used by Daniel Khalife to escape prison

Holly Evans8 September 2023 19:53


Anarchy revealed inside prison-break Wandsworth jail where inmates call the shots

The chief inspector of prisons has revealed the chaos inside the overcrowded Wandsworth jail where inmates tell staff the rules – as questions mount about the “inside help” fugitive Daniel Khalife was given to make his dramatic escape.

Writing exclusively for The Independent, Charlie Taylor described “small, dark and cramped” cells plagued with damp and vermin, where inmates are routinely locked up for 22 hours a day with little access to education or training to break the cycle of offending.

Holly Evans8 September 2023 19:08


Met Police say ‘no sign’ of chef uniform being recovered so far in search

Counter-terror commander Dominic Murphy denied the force had little to go on in their search for escaped terror suspect Daniel Khalife.

Mr Murphy told Sky News: “I wouldn’t accept that. I would accept that we’re working on lots of leads, over 100 calls, as I say, from the public.

“This is just a next step in us trying to understand and, for Daniel’s information, that he really needs to hand himself in and we will be closing in on him.”

Mr Murphy said there was no sign of Khalife’s chef uniform being recovered so far, but he appealed to the public to call 999 if they find it.

He said he remained “opened minded” on whether the terror suspect had already fled the country, but said the search was currently focused on the London area and other parts of the UK, in addition to support from the Border Force.

Holly Evans8 September 2023 18:53


Reward offered for information on Khalife

Police have confirmed the first sighting of fugitive Daniel Khalife near Wandsworth roundabout and have offered a £20,000 reward.

Police confirm first sighting of Daniel Abed Khalife and offer £20,000 reward

Holly Evans8 September 2023 18:37


Chef uniform Daniel Khalife escaped prison in is revealed

The former British army soldier fled from HMP Wandsworth at 7.50am on Wednesday by clinging to the straps of a food delivery van while wearing the cook’s uniform he wore to work in the London prison.

Holly Evans8 September 2023 18:20


Terror suspect was seen ‘climbing out from under the lorry’

Metropolitan Police counter-terror commander Dominic Murphy said terror suspect Daniel Khalife was seen climbing out from underneath the food company van by a member of the public.

He was wearing his prison chef’s uniform when he was spotted around a mile-and-a-half from Wandsworth Prison. He then made his way towards Wandsworth town centre.

Mr Murphy told Sky News: “That sighting was shortly after Daniel Khalife escaped from Wandsworth Prison, and it was at the junction of Trinity Road and Swandon Way at the Wandsworth roundabout where a member the public saw Daniel climbing out from under the lorry and walking towards Wandsworth town centre.”

He added: “I’m not saying I don’t have any CCTV. That’s part of our ongoing investigation.”

Khalife was seen climbing out from underneath the lorry

(The Metropolitan Police)

Holly Evans8 September 2023 17:47


Khalife urged to hand himself in

The Met Police have called on Khalife to “hand himself in” and warned that officers were “closing in” on the terror suspect after he escaped prison.

Counter-terror commander Dominic Murphy said: “My message to him is to hand yourself in, either call us or go to a local police station and hand yourself in.

“With the reward we are offering today and the amazing support we have had from the public and the media, we will be closing in on you, Daniel, you really need to come in and give yourself up.”

Holly Evans8 September 2023 17:30


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