Ariel Castro
Ariel Castro appeared before court for sentencing in Cleveland, Ohio (Reuters)

Gruesome details about the kidnapping of three women in Cleveland have been revealed as their abductor, Ariel Castro, waits to receive his sentence.

Castro, 52, kidnapped Amanda Berry, 27, Gina DeJesus, 23, and Michelle Knight, 32, between 2002 and 2004, when they were teenagers, and locked them up in his home-dungeon at 2207 Seymour Avenue until they managed to escape earlier this year.

Cleveland police detective Andy Harasimchuk told Cuyahoga County Court that Castro lured his first victim, Knight, into his house under the pretext of giving her a puppy as a present for her son.

Once inside Knight, then 21 years old, was chained and sexually abused.

Castro, who was in court, had his hands and feet handcuffed as details of his crimes were described by numerous witnesses.

He has pleaded guilty to 937 charges, including murder, rape, kidnap and assault.

Harasimchuk said his second victim, Berry, accepted a lift from Castro as she left work at a local Burger King because she knew one of his daughters.

Castro invited her to his house to have a chat with his daughter.

Once there Berry briefly saw Knight, whom Castro said was his roommate. Years later Knight would help Berry give birth to the child she had in captivity with Castro, Harasimchuk said.

Shortly after entering the house Berry was sexually assaulted and then restrained with duct tape. Castro put a motorcycle helmet on her head and kept her in chains in the house basement.

A model of Castro's house showing the dungeon where his victims were held captive and abused was displayed in court.

Just like Berry, DeJesus was kidnapped aged 14, after she had accepted a lift from the former school bus driver as she was a schoolmate of one of his daughters.

Instead of taking her home, Castro asked her to come to his house and help him carry a speaker.

Once inside she became uncomfortable and asked to leave but she was eventually restrained and assaulted, the detective said.

Authorities said the three suffered continuous and unrestrained sexual and psychological abuse throughout their decade in captivity.

Knight had violent forced miscarriages, for which Castro is now facing aggravated murder charges.

He has also been accused of holding captive a six-year-old girl whom he fathered with Berry.

Castro's defence attorney Craig Weintraub told the court his client accepted "full responsibility" for his crimes but added his was a "unique case" as it concerned a man with an "undiagnosed mental illness."

The case exploded in May, after Berry managed to escape from her dungeon by crawling out of the house with her daughter and contacted police.

In a message published on the Cleveland Police department website, Knight thanked people for the overwhelming support she received after being freed.

"Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, she became a butterfly," Knight wrote.

Castro, who was described as a "demonic criminal" by one of his grown up daughters, agreed to a plea deal last week, which spared him a death sentence. He is to serve life in prison without parole, plus 1,000 years.

In court, he told Judge Michael Russo he wishes to publicly apologise at the end of the sentencing hearing.

Ariel Castro Home cleveland
A model of the home of Ariel Castro is displayed in the court room (Reuters)