Nine years in jail for escaped prisoner

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A FUGITIVE robber who sparked an international hunt after he escaped from prison will face more than nine years behind bars after being brought to justice.

Brian Waite, who is originally from Leeds, had been on the run for seven years after escaping from North Sea Camp in Lincolnshire after serving three years of an 11-year sentence for stealing £25,000 from a Securicor van in Cardiff.

After his escape in December 2006, Waite obtained false passports in six different identities which allowed him to travel extensively across the globe.

He was able to travel to countries including China, Colombia, Senegal and the Netherlands while he was on the run.

Officers from West Yorkshire Police made appeals on the BBC1’s Crimewatch programme in a bid to trace Waite.

He was eventually arrested in Lewisham, London, last year by officers from the Metropolitan Police along with detectives from West Yorkshire Police’s Protective Services.

Waite pleaded guilty yesterday to offences of escaping from lawful custody and eight counts of fraud and deception relating to passport offences when he appeared at Woolwich Crown Court.

He was sentenced to 30 months in prison for the offences, which must be served consecutively after he has served his initial sentence for robbery.

Detective Inspector Neil Hollis, who was involved in the West Yorkshire Police investigation, said: “This sentence will see Waite spend the next nine years behind bars.

“His arrest and conviction follows tireless detective work following up on information from numerous media appeals, including featuring on the BBC’s Crimewatch.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the public for their assistance and send the strong message to criminals that no one can escape justice.”