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Top 10 Most Horrifying British Serial Killers

VO: RiB
Written by Richard Bush The word monster, just doesn't cut it. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’ll be counting down the top 10 most notorious British serial killers. For this list, we’ll be looking at some of the most disturbing serial killers in British history, with today’s entries chosen due to their infamy. There will be sensitive and mature content here, so viewer discretion is advised. Special thanks to our user RichardFB for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 10 Notorious British Serial Killers


The word monster, just doesn't cut it. Welcome to WatchMojo UK and today we’ll be counting down the top 10 most notorious British serial killers.

For this list, we’ll be looking at some of the most disturbing serial killers in British history, with today’s entries chosen due to their infamy. There will be sensitive and mature content here, so viewer discretion is advised.

#10: Steve Wright

A case which came to justice in 2008, Steve Wright, who became known as the Suffolk Strangler, was found guilty of murdering five prostitutes in Ipswich in 2006. Known for frequently visiting brothels, when Wright turned to murder he disposed of his victims’ bodies in roadside woodlands. Ultimately convicted due to DNA evidence, he was sentenced to life imprisonment - although he’s been implicated in a number of unsolved cases since.

#9: Colin Ireland

A premeditated killer who carried around a murder kit containing rope and handcuffs, Ireland frequented gay bars in Southend, convincing men to partake in bondage acts, with the intent of brutally torturing and killing them. Ireland claimed he was hetrosexual, saying that he singled-out homosexual men as they were easy targets. Dubbed “The Gay Slayer” by the media, he killed five men in 1993, encouraged by his own New Year’s resolution to become a serial killer. Fingerprint evidence and a confession saw him convicted. He died in prison in 2012.

#8: John Christie

The perpetrator of a reign of terror between 1943 and 1953, John Christie is responsible for at least eight murders, including that of his own wife, in the infamous address of 10 Rillington Place. A highly-manipulative and calculated killer, Christie gassed, raped and strangled many of his female victims, before hiding their bodies in the floorboards, walls and garden of his house. Though he was eventually caught, the failed police searches of Christie's house, and the mishandled trial and execution of the innocent Timothy Evans, made this case even more shocking.

#7: Peter Sutcliffe

Labelled the “Yorkshire Ripper” by the press, Sutcliffe violently murdered thirteen women and attempted to kill seven others throughout the 70s, with his modus operandi being a hammer and a knife. Most of his victims were prostitutes, although the murder of 16-year old Jayne MacDonald, who wasn't a prostitute, proved that Sutcliffe's spree wasn't limited to a single group.Eventually convicted in 1981 after spades of evidence was uncovered, Sutcliffe said that “the voice of god” told him to commit the murders.

#6: Jack the Ripper

A name first used in a letter sent by the supposed killer, “Jack the Ripper” terrorised the streets of Whitechapel in the late 19th century. Targeting poverty-stricken women, usually prostitutes, and slitting their throats before mutilating them, the Ripper has been linked to numerous killings. However, the canonical five, as they’ve become known, are without doubt the most horrific - including the murders of Mary Ann Nichols and Mary Jane Kelly. Despite a case file filled with stomach-turning details, the Ripper is still unidentified to this day, although there's a long list of potential suspects.

#5: Amelia Dyer

A woman who exploited “baby farming” - the act of adopting unwanted children in exchange for money - Amelia Dyer is said to have killed around 400 infants over a 20-year period in the late 1800s. Although arrested and committed to insane asylums several times, Dyer routinely returned to her abhorrent acts, allowing those in her care to die from neglect, or strangling them. One of her methods of disposing corpses was by dumping them in the River Thames, which eventually lead to her being caught and hanged in 1896.

#4: Ian Brady & Myra Hindley

Abducting, sexually-assaulting, murdering and burying children in the Moors between 1963 and 1965, Ian Brady & Myra Hindley carried out some of the most shocking crimes in history. With victims aged between 10 and 17, the couple supposedly conspired to commit what they considered a 'perfect murder. Ultimately, they were convicted on numerous counts of murder and have since both died in prison, but the body of one of their victims, Keith Bennett, is still to be found.

#3: Dennis Nilsen

A serial killer and necrophiliac who has been described as the “British Jeffrey Dahmer” due to his ritualistic methodology, Nilsen is said to have killed at least 12 men over the course of five years. Luring victims back to his home, he would strangle or drown them, before bathing and clothing the bodies. Several weeks later, he'd have intercourse with the bodies, dismember and disembowel them. Disposing of some corpses by burning them or flushing them down the toilet, a series of drainage discoveries led to his confession. He’s been serving a life imprisonment since 1983.

#2: Fred and Rosemary West

The depravity of this couple seemingly knew no bounds. Committing crimes of sexual abuse, mutilation and dismemberment - some of which involved their own children - the Wests are responsible for at least 12 murders. Their “house of horrors” staged horrific acts for 20 years, with bodies hidden all around the property, of victims who were usually lured there with the promise of employment. After one of their targets went to the police, the property was eventually searched and the couple’s terrible acts were revealed. Fred has since committed suicide in prison. Rose is still incarcerated.

#1: Harold Shipman

This British GP, now known as “Dr Death”, is estimated to have taken the lives of over 250 people via lethal doses of diamorphine. It is thought that around 80 per cent of Shipman’s victims were vulnerable, elderly women, although some of his victims were as young as 4 years old. Suspicion arose due to the high death rate among his patients, and he was eventually found guilty on 15 counts of murder. Four years later in 2004, Shipman hanged himself in his prison cell.
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