Manhunt for notorious gangster ramped up after absconding from prison

Daniel Gee is still on the run
-Credit: (Image: Merseyside Police)


The manhunt for a notorious gangster, who conspired to buy guns, has been intensified after he absconded from prison.

Thug Daniel Gee, now 44, was a leading member of an organised crime group that turned the Grizedale estate, Merseyside, into a 24-hour open air drug market. Gee was jailed indefinitely for the public's protection in 2010 after a secret police probe captured him conspiring to buy guns and threatening to kill a teenager who had shot him during a New Year's day confrontation in 2008, reports the Liverpool Echo.

It was revealed last night that Gee had absconded from jail and had gone on the run. It is understood Gee was in a category D open prison when he absconded.

Merseyside Police today confirmed that the investigations were being led by Cleveland Police. The only category D open prison in the north east is Kirklevington Grange Prison.

Cleveland Police have been approached for comment.

Gee's status was confirmed by the Ministry of Justice. A spokesperson for the Prison Service later 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."

An abscond is considered as an escape that does not involve overcoming a physical security restraint. According to the jail and Probation Service, Category D prisons have minimal security and allow eligible prisoners to spend most of their day away from the prison on licence to carry out work, education or for other resettlement purposes. If an offender fails in an open prison, they are not permitted to return to an open prison for at least two years.

Gee, and his brother Darren, led a violent gang who controlled illicit business on the north Liverpool estate, but he was jailed after he plotted to arm himself after making death threats to 16-year-old gunman Jamie Starkey.

Gee was seriously injured after being shot by Starkey outside an Anfield pub in the early hours, with one of the bullets piercing his stomach and lung before going out his back.

The gangster was taken to hospital after the incident but refused treatment, but was described to be in severe amounts of pain and trauma after Starkey's "murderous and unprovoked" attack. In a trial in October 2009, Gee was found guilty of two counts of threats to kill and another two of blackmail.

Jurors were unable to agree on the two more serious charges of conspiracy to murder and conspiracy to possess firearms and ammunition.

As his second trial was about to start, Gee, formerly of Maryport Close, Everton, admitted the second charge. Prosecutor Ian Unsworth KC said Gee’s desire for revenge “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 at the same time as the seven-and-a-half year sentence he was serving for drugs offences.

Gee's barrister argued during his trial that his client was "frankly terrified" at the thought of an indeterminate sentence and he had only conspired to arm himself because he feared another confrontation with the Starkey family. He claimed Gee had been targeted because of his underworld family name and revealed his greatest fear was receiving an indefinite sentence because he believed he would never be released.

But the then Recorder of Liverpool, Judge Henry Globe KC, said: "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 house on December 2 2012. Despite five arrests and the murder weapon being recovered, no one has been convicted of his death.

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