Lawyer tells inside story of North Wales serial killer’s Christmas Eve confession
A lawyer who represented North Wales serial killer Peter Moore has revealed the moment his client confessed to him about stabbing four men to death.
Dylan Rhys Jones, a former solicitor, wrote in his soon-to-be published book ‘The Man in Black – Peter Moore – Wales’ Worst Serial Killer’ that the killer confessed to saying the attacks were easy and “like a knife through butter”.
The book is being published to coincide with the 25 year anniversary of the murders in which Moore, who owned a cinema in Flintshire, said he committed for “fun”.
In the early hours of Christmas Eve in 1995 at Llandudno police station, Moore admitted he committed the killings in a three-month spree which begun in Anglesey.
With Mr Jones alongside him, Moore, a film fanatic from Kinmel Bay who owned a chain of cinemas in Bagillt, Denbigh, Holyhead and Blaenau Ffestiniog, told two North Wales Police detectives he had slain the four men.
He said: “I want to admit to both of the murders in Anglesey, the murder on Pensarn beach and also I want to admit to another murder that you don’t know about which I committed in Clocaenog Forest near Ruthin.”
He was sentenced to life imprisonment in November 1996 with a recommendation that he never be released.
The killings began in September 1995 when Moore stabbed 56-year-old Henry Roberts to death at his home near Caergeiliog, Holyhead.
27 wounds were found in the retired railway worker’s body.
In October, Moore met 28-year-old Edward Carthy at a gay bar in Liverpool who he then proceeded to stab to death in Clocaenog Forest.
In November he killed Keith Randles, a 49-year-old traffic manager from Chester, on the A5 in Anglesey.
Finally, he stabbed and left Anthony Davies, 40, to die on Pensarn Beach near Abergele in December.
The book tells how Moore called on Henry Roberts’ home in Caergeiliog dressed in black with a Nazi-style cap and armed with a hunting knife.
It goes into more detail, such as how Roberts pleaded he was not Jewish before he was killed, how Keith Randles pleaded for his life and how the killer hid mementos of his victims in his garden pond.
A knife bearing traces of the blood of a number of men was found in a bag belonging to Moore.
On a shelf in Moore’s bedroom were a police helmet, two German military caps and a pair of long, black boots.
Hanging on a cupboard alongside the bed was a truncheon and a sergeant’s uniform hung in the wardrobe.
Speaking about the murder of Keith Randles, Moore told the detectives: “He asked me why I was killing him as I stabbed him, and I said that it was for fun.
“He fell to the floor. I just thought it was a job well done and left and returned to my van.”
When asked how he felt when he killed his victims, Moore replied: “It was easy. Just like a knife through butter.”
Moore confessed to attacking “many men” in the Conwy Valley over a period of 20 years before the murders started.
He said: “When driving around, I would sometimes notice someone walking along the road late at night and I would stop and attack them.
“I would assault them with a police truncheon and strike them on the body and their heads many times. Usually I would be dressed as a policeman or in a Nazi uniform or something similar, just to scare them. I heard that a few of these men had been seriously injured after the attacks.”
In the book Mr Jones also describes the traumatic effect on himself and on the two police officers of hearing Moore tell his story in a calm, measured way.
Mr Jones, who lives in Abergele, added: “It was like watching a cold-blooded lizard move towards its prey, slowly, calculating every move not using its energy unnecessarily, just describing the bare essentials of the deed. It was the desensitized description by a killer dispassionate as to the implications of his actions.”
The following morning, just a few hours later, Moore withdrew his confession.
He claimed he had done it to protect his friend, a man he called Jason, the name of the killer in the Friday the 13th films he had shown at his cinemas.
Mr Jones said: “I have reflected often on whether what Moore said during this interview was true. Was it a case of bravado, the man had his audience and he took his opportunity to perform, like an actor on celluloid before a captive cinema audience?
“Were the two detectives and I the gullible audience ready to lap up the gory details of a horrific killer in some B-movie, just for Moore’s pleasure? The three of us were without doubt shocked, horrified and captivated by the performance we witnessed. But was it true?”
Mr Jones no longer practices as a solicitor but lectures on Law and Criminology and helped create the Criminal Justice and Offender Management foundation degree course at Coleg Cambria and University of Chester.
He is a regular contributor to TV and radio.
He said: “Moore made killing an emotionless, simple and efficient process.
“He had perfected the act of killing in a way which had made him a ruthless machine feeding an inner need in the darkest reaches of his psyche to be pleasured by violence, control and ultimately death.
“The impression I had is that Moore had enjoyed what he had done, that he believed it was a job well done and that he had fed his demons in an effective way, the act of killing was like putting ‘a knife through butter’ the pleasure of killing appeared immeasurable.”
‘The Man in Black – Peter Moore – Wales’ Worst Serial Killer’ is published by Y Lolfa in September, priced at £9.99.
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