Daniel Khalife ‘lookalike’ handcuffed on train platform was ‘treated to a seat in first class as an apology for the mix-up’
- Police hunting Khalife accidentally swooped on a man at a platform
- Do YOU know the train passenger? Email [email protected]
A train passenger handcuffed by police after being mistaken for escaped terror suspect Daniel Khalife says he was treated to an upgraded seat as an apology for the mix-up.
Police hunting Khalife accidentally detained a ‘look-a-like’ at an Oxfordshire train station, with the incident caught on camera by a member of the public.
Officers swooped on the unnamed man at Banbury station yesterday – until they established he was not the fugitive former soldier who escaped HMP Wandsworth strapped to the underneath of a delivery van early on Wednesday morning.
A man claiming to be the person stopped by police wrote on X: ‘No, I’m not the guy who escaped from prison. Apparently somebody reported me due to looking a lot like him. I got released after they found out who I really was, and the train station put in business class as an apology! [sic]’
An earlier tweet read: ‘Hi everyone, just made this acc to explain what happened today. A woman mistook me for Daniel Khalife, and alerted the police.
‘After about 20 mins of questions (and some gd banter) I proved I wasn’t the escapee after a finger print scan.’
As police dealt with the ‘possible sighting’, train passenger Oliver, in his 20s, was left waiting outside the station while the incident took place.
When the train then pulled into the station, he was able to snap a clear picture of the man, who many have said shares a striking resemblance to 21-year-old Khalife.
Oliver said: ‘We went through Banbury on the way to Basingstoke.
‘Just before we got there, they said on the Tannoy that we couldn’t go to Banbury and they’re delaying the train as they think there’s an escaped terrorist at the station.
‘It was a 15-minute wait – when we pulled into the station he was right outside my window – it looked like him a lot.
‘When we were waiting at Banbury I was a bit worried at first, I was thinking a lot of things – is he on the track, is he trying to get on the train, what’s going to happen.
‘It was a bit daunting at first but I’m glad they told us correct information because sometimes they withhold it.’
There have so far been no confirmed sightings of Khalife, with the ex-Royal Signals soldier said to be ‘resourceful’ as he continues to allude authorities.
Thames Valley Police said: ‘Officers dealt with a possible sighting of a wanted male at Banbury Train Station this afternoon.
‘It was not the person we were looking for and the incident has been stood down. Thank you for your support at the time.’
The Metropolitan Police said in a statement reported by the Guardian: ‘We are aware of a man being stopped by police in the Banbury area earlier today.
‘We have liaised with colleagues in Thames Valley and confirmed the man in question is not Daniel Khalife.’
Commander Dominic Murphy, who is leading the investigation, asked for anyone with information about Khalife to get in touch urgently.
He said: ‘Since yesterday, over 150 officers and staff have been working around the clock on apprehending Khalife.
‘We have issued a nationwide alert that has resulted in increased security at our ports and borders, however currently there have not been any confirmed sightings.
‘I recognise and am fully aware of the impact these measures are having on the public. We are working to ensure as minimal disruption as possible.
‘It is crucial for the public to help us with this search and to call us immediately if they have any information on the whereabouts of Khalife.’
The fugitive, described as being of slim build, with short brown hair and 6ft 2ins tall, and was said to be wearing a white T-shirt, distinctive red and white chequered trousers and brown steel-toe boots, though the Met Police said that the public should not focus on his clothing.
Murphy said at a briefing: ‘He clearly could very quickly change those clothes, so I wouldn’t want to focus too much on that.’
He described him as a ‘very resourceful individual’, adding: ‘Our experience of him shows that, so nothing is off the table with him at the moment.
‘This was a really busy area of London and we’ve had no confirmed sightings in any of that information, which is a little unusual, and perhaps testament to Daniel Khalife’s ingenuity in his escape and some of his movements after his escape.
‘It’s important that we remember that we have some of the best military in the world here in the UK and he was trained.
‘He was a trained soldier – so ultimately he has skills that perhaps some sections of the public don’t have.’