Daniel Khalife: How the terror suspect was caught by police after a four-day national manhunt for fugitive

10 September 2023, 18:10

Khalife has been charged after breaking out of prison
Khalife has been charged after breaking out of prison. Picture: Alamy/Handout

By Chay Quinn

Daniel Khalife was finally caught after four days on the run following his escape from HMP Wandsworth.

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Khalife, 21, was charged today with escaping custody on September 6 while on remand at Wandsworth pending trial at the Old Bailey, contrary to common law. He will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Monday.

He was arrested on a towpath near Rowdell Road, Northolt on Saturday, after being on the run for four days.

After the terror suspect was hunted in a national search for the ex-soldier turned-inmate.

Khalife's escape sparked an urgent manhunt.
Khalife's escape sparked an urgent manhunt. Picture: Metropolitan Police

Reportedly, when he was caught by anti-terror police, he was bundled off of a stolen mountain bike he was using to travel around 10.41am near the canal.

When he was caught, a witness told The Sun that when he was sitting on the floor after being restriained by authorites, he winked at the passerby and then started laughing.

Two men who worked at the Wandsworth prison that Khalife escaped from have been suspected following the escape.

Police reportedly worked with MI5 and MI6 to snare Khalife using bugged phones and raiding a "safehouse".

The residential property in Richmond was searched by police shortly before Khalife was spotted crossing the Thames in Chiswick.

A £20,000 reward was offered in the pursuit of Khalife - but it is unknown whether the sum has been claiming by any amateur sleuths.

Khalife tied himself to the underside of a food delivery truck.
Khalife tied himself to the underside of a food delivery truck. Picture: Metropolitan Police

The plain-clothes police officer that captured Khalife allegedly threatened to shoot the suspect who was wearing a white t-shirt and dark shorts - to which he laughed.

Commander Dominic Murphy, head of the Met's Counter Terrorism Command, said: "He was fully cooperative and handcuffed and arrested on suspicion of being unlawfully at large and taken to a police station where he was re-arrested for escaping from lawful custody."

When confronted with allegations that the recapture took a long time, Murphy said: "I don't recognise the fact that 75 hours is a long time to find somebody unlawfully at large from a prison.

Mr Murphy praised public cooperation in the manhunt.

Daniel Khalife has been accused of spying for Iran.
Daniel Khalife has been accused of spying for Iran. Picture: Social media

The manhunt was the first such operation carried out via the new Counter-Terrorism Operations Centre (CTOC), a multi-million-pound nerve centre at a classified location in West London.

Mr Murphy said: "This was the first big operation they did And it shows this is working because we're working very closely.

"If anybody supported for or assisted Daniel Khalife, either before his escape, during, or after, we will be looking for those individuals and we will bring them to justice."