Muswell Hill serial killer Denis Nilsen dies in prison
- Credit: Archant
Notorious serial Killer Dennis Nilsen, who lured victims to his Cranley Gardens home before strangling them and flushing away their remains, has died behind bars at the age of 72.
The Prison Service confirmed Nilsen died at HMP Full Sutton on Saturday, 34 years into his life sentence.
It is believed he died from natural causes.
Nilsen, a necrophiliac, killed 15 young men between 1978 and 1983.
Victims were mainly homeless gay men, and he murdered at least three at 23D Cranley Gardens, using his hob there to boil skin off limbs he had hidden under floorboards and in cupboards.
After luring his victims to their death, Nilsen would often sit with their corpses for days before dismembering them.
His warped crimes were only detected by chance – when a drain outside his home became blocked by the human remains he had tried to flush away.
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He was jailed for life with a recommendation he serve a minimum of 25 years in 1983, on six counts of murder and two of attempted murder.
A spokesman for the Prison Service said: “Dennis Andrew Nilsen, date of birth November 23 1945, died in custody at HMP Full Sutton on May 12, 2018.
“As with all deaths in custody, there will be an independent investigation by the Prisons and Probation Ombudsman.”
Predator Nilsen would often befriend his victims in the pubs and bars of London, before offering to entertain them at his flat.
Once there, many were strangled to death - sometimes after they had lost consciousness - leaving him free to defile their remains.
A grim interview aired in 1993 saw the bespectacled Scottish murderer describe the macabre scenes that followed.
He told an interviewer how he enjoyed caring for the bodies, dressing them and undressing them and recounted in horrific detail how they were then cut up.
While some remains were inexpertly flushed away by Nilsen, others were stored under his floorboards and in cupboards for many months, meaning detectives were greeted with the foetid stench of decay when they first searched his flat.
He said: “The bodies are all gone. There is nothing left. But I still feel a spiritual communion with these people.”
His former Cranley Gardens house has been on the market several times since and is still occupied today, with flowers visible in the attic window.
The sentence given to him in 1983 was later upgraded to a whole-life tarriff.
Report by Press Association