Escaped killer found dead in hotel room

A terminally ill murderer has been found dead in a hotel room in southern Finland after failing to return from his prison leave in August.

Jukka Hilden, who was given a life sentence in 1994 for the execution-style slaying of a drug dealer which came to be known as the ‘barn murder’, was found in Lahti by a hotel worker, according to Helsingin Sanomat.

Despite being described by police as dangerous, Hilden was due to be released from prison later this year when his 18-year sentence would have been served. Although a handgun was found in the man’s room, sources suggest that the death was not the result of a suicide or murder.

It has been suggested that he died of the disease from which he had been suffering, and that this is also the most likely reason why he chose not return to prison so close to the end of his sentence.

Detective Chief Inspector Esko Heinonen of the Paijat-Hame Police Department confirmed that Hilden had been found, but refused to go into any further details on confidentiality grounds. “No crime is suspected in connection with Hilden’s death,” he told HS.

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