A quarter of a century after his sentencing, the disturbing tale of Peter Moore is told in the upcoming BBC documentary, 'Dark Land: The Hunt For Wales’ Worst Serial Killer'.

For years, Peter Moore stalked the northern coast of Wales, waging a campaign of terror that culminated in the murder of four men in 1995.

Now, 25 years on, former Chief Constable of Dyfed-Powys Police, Jackie Roberts, revisits the case of the so called ‘Man in Black’ with the aim to finally bring closure to the families of his victims.

The National Wales: Former Chief Constable of Dyfed Powys Police, Jackie Roberts Former Chief Constable of Dyfed Powys Police, Jackie Roberts

Speaking on the programme, she says: “There are a lot of unanswered questions when you’re dealing with a case of this nature and I think it’s an opportunity for us to explore exactly what the facts are and to speak to those people who were directly involved.”

Born in 1946, Moore was known as "the man in black" due to his dress sense. He owned a chain of cinemas across the north, but beneath the façade of a respectable businessman was a dark and warped mind.

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Moore was a man who seized upon a climate of homophobic prejudice to embark on a 20 year rampage of savage sex attacks largely against gay men who, at the time, were reluctant to report what had happened to them to the police.

His murderous spree began when Moore killed 56-year-old Henry Roberts at his home in Caergybi on Ynys Môn in September 1995. The next month, Moore met Edward Carthy, a 28-year-old man, at a bar in Liverpool; Mr Carthy was subsequently stabbed to death in the Clocaenog Forest near Rhuthun.

His next victim in November was Keith Randles, a 49-year-old traffic manager from Chester. Mr Randles was killed on the side of the A5 road on Ynys Môn. His final victim was Anthony Davies, a 40-year-old crematorium worker, who was stabbed and left to die on Pensarn Beach in Abergele on December 18. 

The National Wales: Peter Moore stabbed four men to death in 1995 and is serving a whole life sentence for his crimesPeter Moore stabbed four men to death in 1995 and is serving a whole life sentence for his crimes

Moore was apprehended by North Wales Police two days after he killed Mr Davies. During his attack on Mr Davies, he had cut himself and left traces of his blood on pebbles.

Searches of his home by detectives uncovered Nazi paraphernalia and an authentic North Wales Police sergeant's uniform and truncheon; it has never been established how he was able to source these items. 

From his arrest up until his trial in November 1996, Moore was represented by Dylan Rhys Jones, a defence solicitor who was just 30-years-old at the time.

"I did it for fun, it was easy," was Moore's confession, heard by Mr Jones on Christmas Eve in 1995. Up until that point he had denied all knowledge of the crimes. By the next day, he had changed his story once again, claiming he had only confessed in order to protect his lover, "Jason" - the name of the psychopath in the Friday the 13th series of slasher films that Moore had shown at his cinemas.

He stuck to his story and plead not guilty at trial. When prosecuting barrister Alex Carlile QC - the former MP for Montgomeryshire who currently sits in the House of Lords - opened the case against Moore at Mold Crown Court, he described him as "the man in black - black thoughts and the blackest of deeds."

The National Wales: Dylan Rhys Jones is the lawyer who defended Peter Moore during his trialDylan Rhys Jones is the lawyer who defended Peter Moore during his trial

The experience of acting on behalf of Moore was harrowing and one which Mr Jones has documented in his 2020 book, 'The Man in Black'. Writing the book has provided him with a form of therapy having struggled for years to come to terms with the gruesome nature of the case. 

Speaking to The National, Mr Jones describes Moore as a "traditional psychopath in the truest sense".

"Peter Moore really doesn't like it when someone discusses his case, unless it's on his terms," he said. 

"A few months ago, he attempted to halt my book from being sold and distributed further. It had already been published at that point, of course. Fortunately I was able to put a stop to his case.

"He is a man who wants everything on his own terms. Right from the beginning of the murder case, he wanted to take control of the narrative. Even in court, he loved the attention. 

"The nature of the man hasn't changed in the 25 years he's been in prison." 

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Mr Jones no longer practices law and is now a senior lecturer and Head of Law at Glyndwr University. He was invited to take part in the BBC documentary but decided against doing so as he has recently sold the rights to his book to a television company who intend to turn his experiences into a drama. 

Peter Moore was sentenced to life imprisonment in November 1996 with a recommendation that he never be released. In 2008, he was told by the High Court that he would spend the rest of his life in prison. Three years later, he attempted to challenge his whole life sentence at the European Court of Human Rights but it was announced that his appeal had failed in 2012. 

He is still under lock and key at Wakefield high security prison, which has been dubbed 'The Monster Mansion', along with 600 of the UK’s most dangerous criminals. 

The one-off special documentary ​'Dark Land: The Hunt For Wales’ Worst Serial Killer' is being shown on BBC One Wales at 9pm on January 17. It will also be available on the BBC iPlayer.

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