A PRISONER who abused neighbours and was later jailed for rape, died of cancer four months into a 10 year sentence.

Patrick Ryan was a prisoner at HMP Hewell at the time of his death at Redditch's Alexandra Hospital on March 22, an inquest heard.

The Worcester News reported on the 69-year-old in December 2015, when he received a suspended sentence after repeatedly playing The Animal's 1960s hit We’ve Gotta Get Out of This Place at all hours of the day and night, harassing neighbours in a block of flats in Wedgberrow Close, Droitwich.

In April 2016 the pensioner was handed a Criminal Behaviour Order by police for harassing neighbours, with behaviour including shouting and putting up offensive signs and notes. At Worcester Crown Court on November 21, 2016, Ryan was jailed for 10 years for two counts of rape, two of assaults by penetration, and one of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

His inquest, held at Worcestershire Coroner's Court yesterday, heard from prison governor Lucy Young who said Ryan went through the standard procedure for prisoners on arrival at the prison, and he opted not to carry out work, which he was allowed to do as he was at retirement age.

She said an ambulance was called in the early hours of March 7, when he was taken to hospital cuffed to officers. When it was confirmed Ryan had terminal cancer, on March 15, she said the order was made to remove his restraints, as it was judged he was incapable of escape.

Steven Rooney, head of Healthcare at Care UK, which proves healthcare to HMP Hewell prisoners, told the inquest Mr Ryan came to the prison with no significant health issues apart from suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, having served in the Royal Air Force, and having alcohol issues.

Mr Rooney explained his health deteriorated during his time at the prison, at various point suffering from cramps, sciatica and constipation.

On March 6 he complained of being severely unwell, and he was monitored which led to a nurse calling for an ambulance.

Mr Rooney said there had been talk at one point Mr Ryan may return to the prison but he said on March 20 they received the news he had widespread cancer, and his health significantly deteriorated before his death on March 27.

Ryan's family, who did not attend the inquest, provided a statement from ex-wife Shirley Ryan. She said she had not been into the hospital to visit him, which Ryan requested, but they had spoken on the phone in which he said he was satisfied with his hospital treatment. She added Ryan's two children, who were estranged from him and lived abroad, had been notified of his death.

Senior coroner Geraint Williams recorded a conclusion of natural causes, adding there was no issues over the quality of the care at the Alex and the death was not preventable.