September: Police said they had solved the M25 cat killer mystery.

After three years of investigation, officers believed foxes were behind the mutilation of cats and other pets that many feared was the work of a serial killer.

But they believed the pets had probably been killed by cars before they were torn apart. Up to 500 pets had been found mutilated with their heads and tails ripped from their bodies.

Mutilated cats’ bodies had been found in places in and around the M25, but there were also been reports nationwide.

Police and campaigners searched for years for the culprit but investigating officers were unable to find any evidence of human involvement.

Two-year-old Chewy’s dismembered body was found in Oxhey Woods, Watford in January 2017 while 18-year-old Jack was found decapitated in a front garden in St Albans in May 2017.

Two rabbits in Watford were also believed to have fallen victim to the M25 cat killer.

In September 2017, a 17-yearold cat was found beheaded in its owner’s garden in Walthamstow while in November, the body of a black and white kitten, around four months old, was found by a teenage girl in Normanshire Drive, in Chingford. Police worked with the RSPCA and the South Norwood Animal Rescue League (SNARL) but could find no evidence the cats were being killed by a human.