Prisoner escapes from escorted visit

McGregor was serving a four-year sentence for assault and robbery McGregor was serving a four-year sentence for assault and robbery

A prisoner has escaped from custody while on an escorted visit to a relative.

Police have warned that Sean McGregor, 31, may be a danger to the public and should not be approached.

He escaped from G4S custody at about 13:45 on Thursday while on compassionate leave at a relative's house in the village of Patna, East Ayrshire.

McGregor was jailed for four years in September 2011 for assault and robbery.

When he was sentenced he was already in prison serving 16 months for possession of a weapon, after appearing in court in February 2011.

'Known associates'

He was serving his sentence at HMP Barlinnie.

The Ayrshire area is being searched and officers have appealed for information about his whereabouts.

Det Ch Insp John Hogg, of Ayrshire CID, said: "I would advise that Mr McGregor may present a danger to the public and people are advised not to approach him if seen but to contact police.

"Officers are continuing with a search of the area, making contact with known associates and checking CCTV in an effort to trace Mr McGregor.

"I would appeal to Mr McGregor to give himself up and make contact with Police Scotland with a view to handing himself in. I would also like to reassure people that Police Scotland will have an increased high-profile police presence in the Ayrshire area until Mr McGregor is traced and arrested."

Anyone with information can call Police Scotland on either 101 or 999, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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