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Breaking: Daniel Khalife recaptured in west London after prison escape



A former soldier who absconded from a prison kitchen by strapping himself to the underside of a delivery van has been recaptured.

Daniel Abed Khalife, 21, was arrested in Chiswick, west London, on Saturday, having gone missing in his cook’s uniform from HMP Wandsworth in London on Wednesday morning.


The Metropolitan police said they had arrested him just before 11am on Saturday.

Footage published by the Sun showed Khalife sitting on the ground next to the Grand Union Canal after his arrest.


He was found with a bike, sleeping bag and a Waitrose bag of food when plainclothes officers arrested him.

A witness, Ethan Andrews, said: “The three officers had him on the floor and then five minutes later there were loads more police on the scene, some from the territorial support group too.”


Khalife is being held in police custody.

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The Met said: “We would like to thank the public and media for their support throughout our investigation to locate Khalife, and we will provide a further update on his arrest in due course.”


Rishi Sunak praised efforts by the police and the public in finding Khalife. Speaking to broadcasters at the G20 summit venue in Delhi, India, the prime minister said: “I’m very pleased with the news and my thanks to the police officers for their fantastic work over the past couple of days, but also to the public who came forward with an enormous number of leads to help the police in their inquiries.



This is obviously very welcome news. Again, my thanks to the police but also to the public for their help.”

The Home Office minister Chris Philp congratulated the police for their “rapid and effective” work to apprehend the terror suspect.

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The policing minister wrote on social media: “Great work by the Met Police. Well done for a rapid and effective piece of work to catch this fugitive. An example of policing at its best. Congratulations to all officers involved in this operation.”

Residents in the area had heard helicopters overhead throughout the morning as police descended on the area with police dogs as they searched residents’ gardens, and were seen stopping cars, inspecting car boots and asking residents for their ID throughout the morning.


Paul Wade said he opened his curtains to find five police officers outside his home earlier on Saturday.

The 79-year-old told the PA news agency: “They were checking everybody’s gardens. Our neighbour told us there were sniffer dogs.


As we understand it, they just clambered over the walls and inspected, they didn’t wake everybody up. They just checked. They had helicopters above.”

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Another resident suggested they had seen Khalife sleeping on a park bench in the area.


Scotland Yard had released a statement on Saturday morning and said the area of south-west London, just under 5 miles from the prison from which he escaped, was the focus of their search.

Officers said he had changed out of the prison kitchen uniform of a white T-shirt and red and white gingham trousers, into a black baseball cap, black T-shirt and dark-coloured trousers. They added that they believed he had been carrying a small bag or case.


Members of the public had reported sightings of him in the area, the other side of the River Thames from HMP Wandsworth.

Details later…


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