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PA Archive/Press Association Images

Child-killer and suspect in disappearance of teenage girl in Donegal dies in custody

Robert Howard died in hospital while imprisoned for the rape and murder of another teenager.

A MAN WHO was convicted of raping and killing a 14-year-old girl and was acquitted of killing another teenage girl from Tyrone has died in custody in England.

Robert Howard was in prison in Durham for the rape and murder of London teenager Hanna Williams whose body was found in 2002.

The 71-year-old convicted killer was also tried in 2005 for the murder of Arlene Arkinson who disappeared after a disco in Bundoran, Co Donegal in 1994.

Howard was the last person seen with Arlene before she disappeared after the young girl had been spotted in a car driven by him.

The jury in the trial were not told of Howard’s history of sexual violence during the trial for Arkinson’s murder. The 15-year-old’s body has never been found.

The PSNI had last year attempted to bring about a fresh breakthrough in the case after new information came to light.

SEARCH/Arlene Arkinson Arlene Arkinson has been missing since August 1994. PA Archive / Press Association Images PA Archive / Press Association Images / Press Association Images

Howard had died in prison last week with the UK Prison Service confirming his death over the weekend.

“HMP Frankland prisoner Robert Howard (dob 20/4/1944) was pronounced dead in hospital at 1.55pm on Friday,” a statement from the service read.

It is believed he died of natural causes.

Read: 20 years ago today, Arlene Arkinson (15) disappeared >

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