Taylor has spent his last 30 years behind bars for the 1986 bombing of the old police headquarters in Russell Street, Melbourne.

The bombing killed 21-year-old Constable Angela Taylor and wounded 21 others.

Taylor is believed to have died at St Vincent’s Hospital in Melbourne on Wednesday aged 79.  His health had been deteriorating for more than a year.

A spokesperson for Corrections Victoria said: “A prisoner died of apparent natural causes at St Vincent’s Hospital this morning.

“As with all deaths in custody, the matter has been referred to the coroner, who will formally determine the cause of death.”

A stolen car loaded with explosives was parked in front of the police complex – the blast throwing debris across three city blocks.

Craig Minogue, 53, who was also convicted over the bombing, is eligible for parole this year.

Taylor’s lungs and heart were failing the career criminal back in June last year.  He was rarely seeing visitors in his final months and had been moved out of the mainstream unit at Port Phillip Prison and into a hospital unit.

Before Russell Street, “Stan the man” was a violent offender who masked his rage and hate of authority behind a cheerful façade.

Despite years of serious criminal offending – including a bank robbery spree committed after escaping from  prison – Taylor had declared himself a changed man when he was released in 1978.

He’d claimed that he would become an actor and writer to earn an honest living.

“I’ve done my time. There are a lot of young people who are down, who are unemployed, who could be thinking that crime is the answer,” Taylor said.

“My message is that crime is never the answer. I have not met one person – not one – who has had a successful life because of crime.” Nine years later he was responsible for the worst act of terrorism ever perpetrated in Victoria.