Escaped murderer Paul Maxwell arrested

The convicted killer escaped during his first-ever day release on Friday

A murderer who escaped from jail while he was on day release has been arrested in a park in Salford, Greater Manchester.

49-year-old Paul Maxwell disappeared on Friday on his first-ever day release from a category C prison.

He was visiting Rochdale town centre, Greater Manchester, with prison staff from HMP Buckley Hall, at the time.

His escape comes months after he became eligible for parole and the trip was supposed to acclimatise Mr Maxwell to living in the outside world, Manchester Evening News reported.

Mr Maxwell has been serving a life sentence since 1996, after he was found guilty of the murder and robbery of 85-year-old Joe Smales in Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

During his escape, the police said they did not believe he posed a significant risk but urged the public not to approach him.

A spokesman for Greater Manchester Police said: “Shortly before 11.50am today, a 49-year-old man was arrested in Albert Park, Salford.

"Another man he was with has been arrested on suspicion of assisting an escapee.

"Both men remain in police custody."

Mr Maxwell’s conviction was quashed by appeal judges in 2009, but he was ordered to stand re-trial and pleaded guilty at a second hearing.

Additional reporting by PA