Community leaders have called for calm after it emerged Da Vinci Code rapist Robert Greens could be fully release from prison within weeks.
The criminal has been allowed out of jail on day release, the Scottish Prison Service has confirmed – and could soon be in front of a parole board.
Greens raped a Dutch student near Rosslyn Chapel in 2005 and beat her so savagely that a passing driver thought she had been struck by a car.
The last time he was freed from prison, his release sparked angry demonstrations from members of the public outside the cottage in which he had been housed near Bonnyrigg.
But Councillor Jim Muirhead, who represents Midlothian South, said that locals needed to put their trust in the police.
He said: “The issue is that he has to go somewhere, and the problem is that I would suspect other local authorities will not be keen to take the guy either. I would say what I said the last time, because I think it was right then. We need to trust the authorities to manage any individual who is released from prison.
“If he is coming back to Midlothian, I have no idea where he is going. I would not think it would be to exactly the same place as before. They certainly try to put people into places where they are visible.”
Residents in Greens’ home town of Dalkeith said they were “frightened” at the thought of him coming back.
The predator, who has four daughters, was last released from prison in 2012, having served six years and ten months of a ten-year sentence.
Hundreds of locals protested against his release – with some even organising a march from Newtongrange village centre to Greens’ home.
But he was jailed again in 2013 for breaching the terms of his licence by visiting Penicuik, where his former wife and mother of his children lives.
Last year, he was moved to Castle Huntly open prison near Dundee in preparation for his final release date. He will be monitored for five years – and possibly for longer – if still deemed a risk to the public.