Muswell Hill Serial Killer Dennis Nilsen 'Spent Final Hours In Excruciating Pain'

An inquest into the death of the infamous murderer has opened.
Dennis Nilsen died in prison in 2018, 34 years into his life sentence
Dennis Nilsen died in prison in 2018, 34 years into his life sentence
Shutterstock

Infamous serial killer Dennis Nilsen spent his final day in prison lying in his cell suffering from internal bleeding, an inquest has heard.

The 72-year-old, known as the Muswell Hill Murderer, died at HMP Full Sutton last May, 34 years into his life sentence for carrying out a murderous spree in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Nilsen is believed to have killed as many as 15 young men, most of them gay and homeless at his north London home.

After luring his victims to their death, the former army chef would often sit with their corpses for days before dismembering them.

His crimes were only detected by chance – when a drain outside his home on Cranley Gardens, Muswell Hill, became blocked by the human remains he had tried to flush away.

Nilsen befriended men in bars and lured them to his home in north London
Nilsen befriended men in bars and lured them to his home in north London
PA Archive/PA Images

He had previously lived with a boyfriend at a rented flat in Melrose Avenue in 1975, moving later to Cranley Gardens, where he lived alone.

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.

The predator 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.

An 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.

Crowds gathering outside Nilsen's house in Melrose Avenue in 1983
Crowds gathering outside Nilsen's house in Melrose Avenue in 1983
Nils Jorgensen/Shutterstock
Police digging and sifting through earth for human remains at Nilsen's home in 1983
Police digging and sifting through earth for human remains at Nilsen's home in 1983
ASSOCIATED PRESS
A coffin being taken from the house in Cranley Gardens, Muswell Hill under police supervision
A coffin being taken from the house in Cranley Gardens, Muswell Hill under police supervision
PA Archive/PA Images

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 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 house of horrors in Muswell Hill 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 tariff.

The inquest into his death continues at Hull Coroner’s Court.

Some of the equipment Nilsen used during his spree of murders
Some of the equipment Nilsen used during his spree of murders
David Benett/Shutterstock