A SEX attacker whose partner is awaiting trial over the alleged murder of their two children has been found dead in his prison cell.
Former TV psychic Martin Smith was found hanged on Monday evening at Strangeways Prison in Manchester where he was serving a 16-year sentence for the rape and indecent assault of a young girl.
Lianne Smith – the Blackpool mother of Smith’s two children – is currently in jail in Barcelona awaiting trial for murder.
Rebecca Smith, five, and her 11-month-old brother Daniel were found dead in a hotel in Spain in May 2010.
It is alleged the two youngsters had been suffocated.
A Prison Service spokesman confirmed to The Gazette: “Prisoner Martin Smith was found hanging by staff at HMP Manchester at approximately 6.30pm on Monday, January 23.
“Staff intervened but he was pronounced dead at the prison at approximately 7pm.
“As with all deaths in custody, the independent Prisons and Probation Ombudsman will undertake an investigation.”
Smith, 46, originally from North Shields, used hypnotism and violence to groom and sexually abuse his victim. He had previously been a guest on the Living satellite channel’s Most Haunted programme.
He and Ms Smith, who were not married but shared the same surname, left the UK for Spain in December 2007 with Rebecca.
Daniel was subsequently born in Spain.
It was reported the couple feared social services were “on a mission” to take their two children away from them following the allegations made against Mr Smith.
The children were found dead shortly after Mr Smith was extradited to the UK from Spain to face charges.
Ms Smith, a former education officer for Lancashire County Council, lived in both Blackpool and Thornton and gave birth to Rebecca at Blackpool Victoria Hospital in July 2004.
It is believed she left the Fylde in 2007, having lived in both Springfield Drive, Thornton, and later on Milbourne Street, Blackpool.
Ms Smith is said to have believed the family would have no chance of a decent life if they were taken into care.
On being taken into custody Ms Smith said: “Martin’s gone now and I’ve been left looking after both of the children.
“I really don’t know how I’ll cope.”
After the death of her two children, in a hotel in the Spanish resort of Lloret-de-Mar, Ms Smith reportedly said she had attempted suicide but could not physically go through with it.
She is facing two counts of murder after a judge ruled out sending her to a psychiatric unit.