Kidnapper Ariel Castro found dead in prison cell

Ariel Castro
Ariel Castro Cuyahoga County Sheriff's office

CLEVELAND kidnapper Ariel Castro has been found dead in his state prison cell.

Ohio Rehabilitation and Correction officials said convicted kidnapper Castro, 52, was found hanged in his prison cell at the Correctional Reception Centre in Orient, Ohio at about 9:20pm local time.

Prison medical staff performed CPR, and Castro was transported to the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Centre. He was pronounced dead at 10:52pm. Officials say he committed suicide.

Castro was recently sentenced to life in prison plus 1000 years for holding three women - Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus and Michele Knight - captive for more than a decade and repeatedly raping them.

The three women disappeared between 2002 and 2004. They escaped on May 6, when one of them yelled to neighbours for help.

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