Daniel Gee: Everything we know about gangland boss' dark past and Teesside prison escape

Daniel Gee, pictured following his sentence in 2010 (left) and a recent mugshot issued by Cleveland Police who are leading the investigation
-Credit: (Image: No credit)

A large-scale manhunt is in progress after notorious gangster Daniel Gee, infamous for flooding an estate with harmful drugs, escaped from a Teesside prison.

In 2010, following a covert operation, Gee was handed an indefinite term of imprisonment for public protection after he was implicated in a plot to procure firearms and threatening a teenager who had shot him during a confrontation on New Year's Day two years earlier.

Despite serving 14 years, Gee, who once ruled the estate alongside his brother Darren, now an anti-knife campaigner and true crime podcaster, remained incarcerated in Yarm until Monday, May 27 last year.

The Liverpool Echo has exclusively learned that Gee has absconded from prison and continues to evade authorities. It was later confirmed by the ECHO that Cleveland Police are leading the investigation into his prison break after Gee fled from Kirklevington Grange Prison, in Stockton, reports Yorkshire Live. Here's everything you need to know about Gee's escape from prison, as reported by the Liverpool Echo.

The Disappearance

Cleveland Police have confirmed that Gee absconded from Kirklevington Grange Prison on Monday, May 27. At the time of his disappearance, Gee was dressed in a black jumper, black Adidas bottoms with a white stripe down each leg, and wore black trainers.

He was seen carrying a yellow JD Sports bag and is described as "A white male, of large build, around 6ft tall and bald".

The Ministry of Justice confirmed Gee's status to the ECHO, and it has been widely reported in the national media. A spokesperson for the Prison Service said: "All prisoners in Category D prisons are robustly risk-assessed and absconds are rare. Offenders who break the rules are punished and face extra time behind bars and we are working with the police to recapture this prisoner."

No physical security restraint

An abscond is defined as a situation where a prisoner escapes without having to overcome any physical security restraints such as walls, fences, locks, bolts, bars, secure vehicles, handcuffs, or direct staff supervision. Category D prisons like Kirklevington Grange have minimal security and allow eligible prisoners to spend most of their day outside the prison on licence for work, education, or other resettlement activities.

Absconds from open prisons are monitored to assess frequency across the estate and identify any national trends, taking into account the management of public risk. Absconding can only occur from open prison conditions.

Offenders who fail to comply with the rules of an open prison will be prohibited from returning to such a facility for at least two years.

The dark history of Gee

Gee, along with his brother Darren, headed a notorious gang that dominated illegal activities in north Liverpool's Grizedale estate. After threatening to kill a 16-year-old gunman, Gee was sentenced to prison for planning to arm himself.

Gee sustained serious injuries when the teen shot him outside a pub in Anfield; one bullet went through his stomach and lung before exiting his back.

Despite being in intense pain and trauma from the "murderous and unprovoked" assault, Gee refused medical treatment at the hospital. In October 2009, he was convicted on two counts of threats to kill and two counts of blackmail during his trial.

While jurors were deadlocked on the more severe charges of conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to possess firearms and ammunition, Gee, previously residing at Maryport Close, Everton, pleaded guilty to the latter as his second trial approached. Prosecutor Ian Unsworth KC remarked that Gee's thirst for vengeance "knew no bounds".

Gee was handed an indefinite prison sentence and was ordered to serve a minimum of four years behind bars before his case would be considered by the parole board. The sentence ran concurrently with the seven-and-a-half year sentence he was already serving for drug offences.

During his trial, Gee's barrister argued that his client was "frankly terrified" of an indeterminate sentence and had only conspired to arm himself due to fear of another confrontation with the family. He suggested that Gee had been targeted because of his notorious family name and shared that Gee's greatest fear was an indefinite sentence, as he believed he would never be released.

However, the then Recorder of Liverpool, Judge Henry Globe KC, stated: "I am in no doubt that the public must be protected from you in the future. I really do not know when it will be safe to release you."

Starkey was shot six times by a masked gunman outside his home on December 2, 2012. Despite five arrests and the recovery of the murder weapon, no one has been convicted of his murder.

Where has Gee gone?

Following Gee's escape, Cleveland Police have indicated that he may have connections in North Yorkshire, including Whitby, Carlisle, St Helens, and Merseyside. There is growing concern that Gee might use his proximity to Newcastle and the Scottish border to flee further north or even attempt to reach Europe.

Cleveland Police have issued a public appeal, stating: "Anyone who may have seen Daniel Gee or may know his current whereabouts is asked to call Cleveland Police on 101, quoting reference number 098852."