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Last Updated: Friday, 9 January, 2004, 16:58 GMT
Cambridge rapist dies in prison
Peter Cook
Peter Cook attacked women in their own homes
The Cambridge rapist Peter Cook has died in prison.

Cook, 75, carried out a series of sex attacks in the city over eight months in the mid-1970s, creating an atmosphere of fear.

He was convicted in 1975 of raping six women, wounding two more and committing an act of gross indecency on a ninth female.

At his trial Mr Justice Melford Stevenson gave him two life sentences and recommended he should spend the rest of his life in jail.

In a statement a Home Office spokeswoman said on Friday: "I can confirm that Peter Cook, 75, has died at Winchester Prison."

'Hooded rapist'

In 1995 there were moves to have Cook, of Cambridge, released on parole or moved to an open prison.

Pressure from the Cambridge MP Ann Campbell helped ensure he remained behind bars.

The then Home Office minister Michael Forsyth pledged he would only be released if he was no longer considered a danger.

Cook was caught after one of Britain's biggest manhunts.

He had become known as the "hooded rapist" because of a distinctive leather mask he wore during his crimes.

He would break into flats and bedsits in Cambridge to attack his victims.

He was caught by a police officer, trying to cycle away from an attack disguised in a long blonde wig.


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