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'Britain's worst' paedophile from Ashford was strangled to death by fellow prisoner, court hears

Britain's worst paedophile was sexually assaulted and strangled to death by a fellow prisoner, a court has heard.

Richard Huckle, who was from Ashford was serving 22 life sentences for abusing nearly 200 children when he was allegedly attacked in his cell by Paul Fitzgerald.

Richard Huckle. Picture: National Crime Agency
Richard Huckle. Picture: National Crime Agency

A court today heard Fitzgerald, himself a sexual offender, strangled Huckle, 33, with a ligature, forced a pen up his nose into his brain and inserted a kitchen utensil in his anus.

Prosecutor Alistair Neil Macdonald said the insertion of an object into Huckle's anus and brain was "a form of punishment" for the crimes he had committed.

He added that the attack was "carefully planned and considered" by 30-year-old Fitzgerald, who was jailed indefinitely in 2009 for a sex attack on a dog walker.

The evidence was heard this morning at Hull Crown Court on the first day of Fitzgerald's murder trial. He denies the offence.

Mr Macdonald told the court Huckle was killed in his own cell at HMP Full Sutton near Pocklington, East Yorks., between 10.30am and 11am on October 13 last year.

'I think I’ve killed him, he’s dead...'

He said fellow inmate Ronald Mariner who discovered Fitzgerald straddling Huckle, who was face down in what was described as the 'massage position'.

His hands and feet were tied and he was being strangled with a ligature with a pool of blood around his head, Mr Macdonald said.

Two prison officers rushed to the cell, it was heard, and discovered Fitzgerald in the same position with his face up against Huckle's.

They told police the attacker appeared to be whispering into the ear of his victim, although it is not known what was said.

After being forcibly removed from the cell Fitzgerald told the officers, "I think I’ve killed him, he’s dead", Mr Macdonald said.

Richard Huckle was sexually assaulted and killed at Full Sutton prison, a court heard
Richard Huckle was sexually assaulted and killed at Full Sutton prison, a court heard

A search of his person revealed three weapons, a vape, two condoms and a guitar string and a bottle of lubricating jelly.

Prison staff attempted to give Huckle CPR and use a defibrillator on him but he was pronounced dead at 12.30pm that day.

A post-mortem concluded he died from strangulation using a ligature in the form of the electrical cable sheath.

He had bruises and abrasions over his body and had been penetrated anally with a four inch-long object.

Mr Macdonald said that one day after the killing Fitzgerald told the Full Sutton mental health care manager Mr Brennan that he had planned to murder two or three people but found he was having "too much fun" with Huckle.

Richard Huckle posed as a photographer to gain trust and access
Richard Huckle posed as a photographer to gain trust and access

According to the prosecutor, he also said he would have liked to cook bits of the body.

Senior nurse manager Mr Brennan described the demeanour of the defendant when he was making these revelations as calm and measured with no remorse, the prosecutor added.

Mr Macdonald said: "This was a carefully planned and executed attack in the course of which Mr Huckle had been subjected to a prolonged attack also designed to humiliate and degrade him.

"The insertion of an object into his anus, and possibly into his brain as well, was, say the prosecution, a form of punishment associated with the offending which had led Mr Huckle to prison.

"All this was most carefully planned and considered by the defendant."

Huckle was given 22 life sentences at the Old Bailey in 2016 for an unprecedented number of offences against children aged between six months and 12 years.

The freelance photographer, from Ashford in Kent, targeted vulnerable youngsters while volunteering in orphanages in Malaysia.

The trial, expected to last five days, continues.

To get the latest updates in ongoing cases, police appeals and criminals put behind bars, click here

Read more: All the latest news from Ashford

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