POLICE set up a “ring of steel” around Da Vinci Code rapist Robert Greens’ house last night after furious protesters tried to kick his door in.
Dozens of officers swooped on the secluded cottage after a panic alarm was set off by the terrified sex offender.
It is understood the incident was sparked when officers who had been keeping watch on the property on the outskirts of Bonnyrigg disappeared for a few minutes.
At that point a group of the protesters who have laid siege to the cottage since it emerged Greens, 33, had been re-housed there by Midlothian Council rushed up the path with one kicking the door.
Another reportedly shouted “There’s no police here now.”
Next door neighbour Caitlyn Nelson, 21, said: “It was incredible how fast they arrived, two vans and three police cars came roaring down the road with blue lights flashing.
“At least 20 policemen jumped out and stood outside his house. He must have a panic alarm inside, they arrived so quick.”
Greens, 34, was jailed for ten years in 2006 after what a judge described as “one of the worst cases of rape” ever dealt with at the High Court.
After being released at the start of this year, the rapist lived in Dalkeith and Edinburgh before being temporarily moved out of the Lothians for almost two months.
His new home was previously used to child sex abuser William Dunsmore, and local residents are demanding Greens be moved.
Neighbours yesterday accused the council of snubbing them, saying they had been promised a meeting with a senior Midlothian councillor, only to be told by unelected council staff that the dangerous sex offender would be staying put.
Protesters Yvonne Chisholm and Maranda Laidlaw said they had been expecting talks with a senior councillor at a meeting yesterday.
Ms Laidlaw, 37, said: “We were told by a council official that we could basically like it or lump it as this was to be his permanent home. It’s disgraceful the way the council are treating people about this.
“The least they could have done is turn up and listened to us, even though they’d have probably only given us the same answer anyway. We’ve now got a petition on the go for people to sign and we plan on staging an organised march too. There has to be somewhere else they can put him.”
The News made several attempts to contact Midlothian Council, but calls were not returned. On Tuesday, Lothian and Borders Police and Midlothian Council said they had no choice but to house Greens.
Detective Superintendent Alan Crawford, head of public protection at Lothian and Borders Police, said: “We want to assure the public that their safety is paramount and robust procedures are in place to manage Robert Greens’ return to the community.
“We fully understand the concerns of the public and hope that, by providing information and explaining the measures in place to help protect them, we can allay these concerns. Robert Greens is from Midlothian and as such local agencies have the responsibility by law to manage him on his release from prison.
“Extensive research have shown that provision of stable housing, access to support networks and effective monitoring are key ways to minimise the risks posed by sex offenders.
“Greens is subject to monitoring and is electronically tagged.”
• Two people were arrested for breach of the peace in connection with an incident.