A HIGH court judge, whose father was murdered by a defendant he locked up 13 years earlier, yesterday jailed a man who had threatened to escape from prison and kill him.

Justice Peter Openshaw jailed Daniel Breaks for 30 years for the murder of his sister's boyfriend in his native Merseyside and the kidnap of a County Durham couple as he fled from justice.

As he was convicted by a jury at Liverpool Crown Court on Monday, Breaks issued a chilling threat to the judge that he would escape from custody and kill him.

Yesterday, it emerged that Justice Openshaw's father, Judge William Openshaw, was stabbed to death in 1981 by a man he had sent to a borstal for stealing in 1968.

John Smith hid in the rafters of the garage at the judge's Preston home before stabbing his victim 12 times in the head, neck and back.

He then fled, kidnapping a man at knifepoint and forcing him to drive to Scotland.

After carrying out the murder of alcoholic Simon Sutton on April 11 last year, in which his victim suffered more than 70 injuries, Breaks fled to Chester-le-Street, County Durham.

Once there, he kidnapped retired probation officer Mike Heaps and his wife, Joy, at knifepoint and forced them to drive to London.

The court heard that the couple had befriended Breaks when he served a 14-year spell in Durham Prison.

Breaks, who has more than 360 convictions for assault, death by reckless driving and carrying weapons, bound their hands, forcing them into their car and driving them to London, reaching speeds of 125mph on the way.

Breaks made a lengthy outburst as he was jailed for life yesterday, with a recommendation he serve at least 30 years.

Surrounded by six guards in the dock, he screamed at the court: "I am not guilty. That is my solicitor, you can't tell him what to say.

"You are part of the fit-up, you mug. Don't make any excuses on my behalf."

Outside court, Detective Superintendent Dave Kelly, who led the investigation, said: "Breaks has shown himself to be a cold, calculating individual.

"He tortured Mr Sutton in the hours leading up to his death. He involved members of the family in the torture, which is despicable.

"Following on from that he travelled to the North-East to an elderly couple who had befriended him and he subjected them to a terrifying ordeal.

"What they went through during those hours when he drove to London at 125mph drinking brandy from a bottle, one can only imagine."