March 15, 2021 3.54 pm This story is over 15 months old

Man who walked out of open prison nine years ago jailed again

He came back because his mother was ill

An inmate who walked out of North Sea Camp open prison remained free for nearly nine years before eventually being brought to justice, Lincoln Crown Court was told on Monday.

Shied Riasat initially arranged for a friend to give him a lift back to his home city of Sheffield when he left the prison in May 2012 and then made his way to the south of England.

The court was told that Riasat found a job working for a Sainsbury’s store in Surrey and then left the country.

He went on to establish a new life for himself in Malaysia where he married and had two children with his wife.

But last month he flew back to the UK to see his family and was arrested when he arrived at Heathrow Airport on a flight from Doha.

Phil Howes, prosecuting, said that Riasat was originally given an indefinite jail sentence for public protection in January 2008 for an offence of arson being reckless as to whether life was endangered.

He was ordered to serve a minimum of 21 months but four years later was still in custody and on May 3, 2012 was transferred from HMP Moorlands to North Sea Camp.

Mr Howes said: “Two days later he walked out.

“The next time he came to the attention of the authorities was on February 7 when they learned he was about to arrive on a flight from Doha. He was arrested at the airport.

“He said he left the prison because he believed he was in danger. He said he had been living in Malaysia for a number of years.”

Riasat, 34, admitted escaping from custody on May 5, 2012. He was given an eight month jail sentence and still continues to serve his indeterminate jail sentence.

The final decision on when he is released will be made by the Parole Board.

Sunil Khanna, in mitigation, said Riasat felt under threat while serving his original sentence and was given protection, but that was withdrawn when he was moved to North Sea Camp where inmates were housed in dormitory accommodation.

Mr Khanna said: “He walked out, telephoned a friend and was given a lift back to Sheffield.

“He got a job but then left the country under his own name to go to Malaysia. He came back under his own name making no attempt to conceal his identity and knowing he would be arrested the moment he touched down at Heathrow.”

Mr Khanna said Riasat’s mother had health problems and his sister had a job application put on hold because her brother was an escaped prisoner who was being sought by the authorities.