A serial sex attacker who built dens in the homes of his victims before raping and assaulting them has died in prison.

Malcolm Fairley committed burglaries and sex attacks across Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire and Buckinghamshire throughout 1984, and was sentenced to six life terms for his crimes at St Albans Crown Court in 1985.

The Ministry of Justice confirmed that the 72-year-old died on Tuesday at HMP Hull.

Fairley was nicknamed "The Fox", because he would build dens in the homes he broke into while waiting for homeowners to return.

He also prepared and ate meals, watched TV and collected trophies from his victims, before committing crimes including rape and indecent assault while wearing a mask and brandishing a shotgun.

He had committed 81 offences before being arrested at his home in Kentish Town, north London, in September 1984.

Earlier this year, Channel 5's new series, The Intruder: He's Watching You From Within, revealed that Fairley could have been paroled, having seen a bid for freedom refused last October.

In the documentary, Det Ch Supt Brian Prickett raised serious concerns about Fairley's possible release from prison, saying: "Malcolm Fairley should never come out of prison after all the fear and harm he put into the community. He never deserves to be released because I think he's still a real risk to the public."