A prisoner who worked with Daniel Khalife said the “strange sausage” escaped terror suspect told him “he was going to be famous”.
Chris Jones was in the same kitchen at HMP Wandsworth where the 21-year-old planned his daring prison escape.
He said Khalife was brought in as a vulnerable prisoner to work with other inmates.
Jones, who left prison after seven months in custody when he was acquitted, said the terror suspect was “like a strange sausage”.
He told that BBC: “One lunchtime he came in and said he was going to be famous. I told him, ‘I think you got on the wrong bus, mate.’
“He came to work with a comb and mirror and constantly checked his appearance, although I can’t say I gave it much thought.”
Jones said Khalife, who escaped strapped to the bottom of a food truck, unloaded truck deliveries at the Category B prison.
He recounted how the inmates would “joke” about jumping in the truck and driving off when it arrived to drop off supplies.
But he said there was always a swarm of security guards around the truck, so he was “surprised” that Khalife actually made it.
Jones added: “Despite this, many mistakes were continually made, all of which were due to staffing issues.”
“Once we went into lockdown because a prisoner was missing, but it turned out he had been released the day before but had not been registered correctly.
“So in that sense, it doesn’t surprise me that someone made a mistake or that there weren’t enough people to staff the kitchen and that they took the chance to unload the truck and disappear under the truck.”
Khalife hid under the food delivery truck to escape while working in the prison kitchen on Wednesday morning.
He fled in a chef’s uniform consisting of a white T-shirt, red and white checkered pants and brown steel-toed boots.
The terror suspect is said to have secured himself to the truck with makeshift straps as it was waved out of the notorious prison.
A huge manhunt was launched for Khalife, with security checks carried out at British airports and ports.
There have been no confirmed sightings of the terror suspect since he was reported missing.
Khalife was remanded in custody at Wandsworth Prison and was due to appear in court on November 20.
The ex-squaddie, who was in the Royal Signal Corps before his dismissal, is accused of leaving fake bombs at an RAF base in January.
After the bomb scam, he disappeared for more than three weeks before being arrested on January 26.
Another charge under the Official Secrets Act alleges that Khalife collected personal information about soldiers from a Department of Defense computer system that could be useful to an enemy.
Anyone who sees Khalife has been urged to call 999 immediately.