Haroon Ahmed
Police have warned the public not to approach escaped convict Haroon Rashid. Staffs Police

Police have warned that a violent convict is on the run from prison.

Haroon Ahmed, escaped from HMP Dovegate, near Marchington in Staffordshire, on Wednesday (27 May) afternoon after walking out with a group of visitors.

The 26-year-old, who was jailed for robbery and is on a "watch list", left the high-security prison with a group of people who were visiting him.

Commenting on the incident, a Prison Service spokesperson said: "Escapes from prison custody are extremely rare but we take each one incredibly seriously. Public protection is our top priority. A prisoner at HMP Dovegate was found to be missing on Wednesday 27 May. We are working closely with the police as part of their investigation."

Security at the prison is run by private firm Serco. Michael Guy, Serco's director at HMP Dovegate, said: "We are taking this extremely seriously and I have commissioned an urgent investigation into the circumstances of the escape. We are working closely with the police to identify what went wrong and to address any failings."

The escaped convict's brother, Majeed Ahmed, 25, of Clarence Road, Derby, has been charged with assisting a prisoner in escaping from prison. He has been released on bail to appear before magistrates in Burton on 25 June.

A black Volkswagen Golf recovered as part of the investigation has been forensically examined.

Ahmed is now believed to have fled to Spain. He is described as Asian, 6ft tall and thin. He has short black hair and was last seen wearing jeans and a grey T-shirt.

Members of the public have been urged not to approach him if they see him, but to call 999 instead.

Anyone who knows of Haroon Ahmed's whereabouts should call Staffordshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.