Manchester Arena bomb plotter being held in County Durham

Hashem Abedi was told he may never be released from jail for his role in the Manchester Arena bombing in 2017 Credit: Elizabeth Cook/PA Images

Manchester Arena bomb-plotter Hashem Abedi is being held at County Durham's maximum-security Frankland Prison, a court has heard.

The prison is one of three with separation centres, dubbed "jails within jails", which were first announced in 2017 to tackle extremism taking place behind bars.

Abedi, 23, was found guilty by a jury in March of 22 counts of murder, attempted murder and plotting to cause an explosion likely to endanger life.

His older brother, Salman Abedi, who was 22, detonated the suicide bomb in the foyer of Manchester Arena at 10.31pm on May 22 2017, as thousands of men, women and children left a concert by pop star Ariana Grande.

The incident resulted in a huge emergency response Credit: PA Images

Abedi was handed a record-length sentence in August for his role in the atrocity, which killed 22 people and injured hundreds.

He could die behind bars after being handed 24 life sentences with a minimum term of 55 years before he can be considered for parole.

It emerged during a hearing at the Old Bailey on Thursday he is being held at Frankland Prison, which has housed other notorious inmates, including Fusilier Lee Rigby's terrorist killer Michael Adebolajo, Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe and Charles Bronson.

The trial judge, Mr Justice Jeremy Baker, confirmed that Abedi will be subject to a 30-year notification order if he is ever freed, following a prosecution oversight during the original sentencing hearing.

The judge said the prison authorities at HMP Frankland had offered Abedi the chance to provide a response ahead of the hearing.

He said: "Mr Abedi made it clear that he didn't wish to do so and confirmed that he didn't request to be present at this hearing".

It is not known whether Abedi is being held in the jail's separation centre - the only one currently in use in England and Wales, although Full Sutton and Woodhill also have them available.

Inmates can be moved to the specialist units if they are linked to terror plotting or considered to be a danger to national security.

The Abedi brothers, from Fallowfield in south Manchester, spent months ordering, stockpiling and transporting the deadly materials for the terror attack - using multiple mobile phones, addresses and runaround vehicles to make their bomb.

They joined their parents in Libya the month before the blast, but Salman returned to the UK on May 18.

He bought the final components needed for the bomb, rented a flat in the city centre in which to build it, and carried out reconnaissance on the arena before finally executing the plot - the final moments of which were caught on CCTV.

Six people from the north east were killed in the attack: Chloe Rutherford, 17, Liam Curry, 19, Courtney Boyle, 19, Philip Tron, 32, Angelika Klis, 39 and Marcin Klis, 42.

Six people from the north east were killed in the Manchester Arena bombing Credit: ITV News/Handouts