UK police catch terrorism suspect Daniel Khalife, who escaped from London prison
A former British soldier suspected of terrorism offences who escaped from prison earlier this week has been recaptured in London, police say.
- Mr Khalife’s escape triggered a major hunt in the UK
- Prime Minister Rishi Sunak thanked police and the public for their help in finding Mr Khalife
- Opposition politicians have demanded answers into how he had been able to escape
Daniel Abed Khalife, 21, absconded from London’s Wandsworth prison on Wednesday morning after slipping out of the prison kitchen where he was working and strapping himself to the underside of a food delivery truck.
“Officers apprehended him just before 11am today … in the Chiswick area (of west London) and he is currently in police custody,” a police statement said.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, speaking to reporters at the G20 gathering in New Delhi, thanked the police and the public for their help in finding Mr Khalife.
Mr Khalife, who was discharged from the British army in May, was being held in prison ahead of trial on offences relating to terrorism and the Official Secrets Act.
He is accused of eliciting or trying to elicit information likely to be useful to a person preparing an act of terrorism while he was based at barracks in central England in 2021, and staging a bomb hoax by placing three canisters with wires on a desk.
He is also charged with obtaining information that might be “directly or indirectly useful to an enemy”.
The BBC has reported he was accused of gathering intelligence for Iran.
Opposition politicians have demanded answers into how Mr Khalife had been able to escape and why he was not being held at a maximum security prison.
There are also questions about the jail’s staffing and security procedures.
The hunt to track down Mr Khalife meant enhanced security checks at UK ports and airports, which have led to delays for passengers.
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