Moors murderer Ian Brady said he was a “petty criminal” who killed his victims for an “existential experience”.
The notorious child killer told a mental health tribunal he was not psychotic or insane and should be allowed to serve the rest of his whole life term in prison rather than a maximum security hospital.
He said he had used Stanislavski method acting skills to trick prison authorities into believing he was mentally ill so that he could be moved to hospital in 1985.
But he refused to be drawn on his previous stated intention to starve himself to death in jail as he told the tribunal panel: “I know what my plans are. They are nothing to do with anyone else.”
Brady, 75, was speaking in public at length for the first time since he was jailed for life in 1966 as he gave evidence in person over four hours at Ashworth Hospital in Merseyside.
Wearing a dark suit, white shirt and tie and dark glasses, his answers were often incoherent and full of digressions as he compared himself to Jack The Ripper and reminisced about his time in prison with the likes of the Kray twins and the Great Train Robbers.
The hearing, which began last Monday, was described as “a complete waste of taxpayers’ money” by the brother of one of the victims of Brady who is being funded by legal aid.
Terry Kilbride, the brother of John, who was snatched in November 1963 aged 12, said the money spent on the tribunal - estimated to be about £250,000 - should have gone towards finding the body of another victim, Keith Bennett.
When asked about the crimes he committed in the 1960s and whether that made him abnormal, Brady compared what he described as “recreational killings” to the acts of soldiers and politicians.
“A criminal in a pursuit of crime is going to gain from the crime,” he said. “He has given a value to the person he is about to kill.”
“What value did you get?” asked panel member Cameron Boyd.
Brady replied: “Existential experience.”
Brady said he was a “petty criminal” compared to the supposed “war crimes” of former prime minister Tony Blair in Iraq.
“Most people don’t recognise the fact that Britain is a psychopathic country. It’s been invading countries for the last 300 years,” Brady said.
He was then asked if he intended to kill himself by starving himself if he was returned to prison.
“Well if I did they can force feed me anyway,” Brady said.
“If they force fed me I then have another plan in mind.
“I have already taken all these contingencies. I know precisely what I’m doing.”
He was then asked why he wants to go back to jail.
Brady replied: “After 50 years I have had enough, I’m not interested in continuing... this, what would you call it, half a century in captivity. On and on and on, nothing’s changed.
“I’m going down.”
He criticised psychiatrists as he told the panel that he was “not interested in being analysed”.
“Some of these psychiatrists, I would throw a net over them,” he said. “I would not allow them on the street. They are unbelievable. How has this person got the job in the first place and how is it they’re able to hold the job?”
He also reserved scorn for the media and its continued interest in him.
“Why are they still talking about Jack the Ripper, after a century? Because of the dramatic background, the fog, cobbled streets.
“Mine’s the same... Wuthering Heights, Hound Of The Baskervilles.”
Brady said he did not accept he had ever been mentally ill.
He also maintained he remained on hunger strike despite his own barrister yesterday stating he had effectively ended it after evidence was heard that he would eat toast and soup.
Brady dismissed Ashworth’s assertions that he had hallucinations and would talk to himself in his room.
He said he would memorise whole pages of Shakespeare and Plato when in his prison cell and today would interact with the television.
“Who doesn’t talk to themselves? This is a question people very rarely ask,” he said.
He said the question to consider was his mental capacity and whether or not “I am sane or insane”.
“That is the question I am here to prove and get on to prison,” he said.
“I know precisely what to expect in prison. I know what my plans are. They are nothing to do with anyone else.”
He continued: “I have never applied for parole and I never will. Freedom or parole does not enter my sphere of thought.
“I know that I am in until death. I have known from day one that I’m finished...I’m finished. I’ve got no ambitions.”
Brady’s legal team say he has a severe narcissistic personality disorder but is not mentally ill and could be treated in prison rather than hospital.
But officials at Ashworth argue that Brady is still chronically mentally ill and remains a paranoid schizophrenic who needs round-the-clock care.
Brady and his partner, Myra Hindley, were convicted of luring children and teenagers to their deaths, with their victims sexually tortured before being buried on Saddleworth Moor.
Pauline Reade, 16, disappeared on her way to a disco on July 12 1963 and John Kilbride, 12, was snatched in November the same year. Keith Bennett was taken on June 16 1964 after he left home to visit his grandmother; Lesley Ann Downey, 10, was lured away from a funfair on Boxing Day 1964; and Edward Evans, 17, was killed in October 1965.
Brady was given whole life sentences for the murders of John, Lesley Ann and Edward.
Hindley was convicted of killing Lesley Ann and Edward and shielding Brady after John’s murder, and jailed for life.
Both later confessed to the murders of Pauline - whose body was found in 1987 - and Keith, whose body has not been discovered.
Hindley died in hospital, still a prisoner, in November 2002 at the age of 60.
Judge Robert Atherton has said that no questions will be heard about the whereabouts of Keith’s body because the tribunal has no authority to investigate the matter.
The hearing is being relayed to the press and public on TV screens at Manchester Civil Justice Centre.
Counsel for both sides will make their closing submissions tomorrow before the panel is expected to release its final decision on Thursday. The panel’s full reasons will given at a later date.