A HUNT has been launched for an on-the-run convicted rapist and robber who is wanted on recall to prison.

Robert Stevens, 62, travels across the country and is known in Hampshire, Dorset, Devon and Avon and Somerset.

Police say he frequently visits betting shops, homeless charities and church-based support groups for the homeless, and also uses the surname Melias.

He was convicted of rape in Shirehampton in 1998 and in 2011 was convicted of a series of knifepoint robberies at shops and bookmakers.

Stevens is described as being a white man, about five feet and six inches tall, with grey brown hair.

He has tattoos of a panther on his left arm, the word City on his left hand, and Bob on his right hand.

Anyone who sees him is asked to call 999, ask for Avon and Somerset Police, and give reference number 5217039469.