The Express editor at the time of Madeline McCann's disappearance and subsequent coverage - which included a 100-day period of featuring a story about her on the front page - denied he had been "obsessed" with the case, and blamed Portuguese police for giving the paper false information.
Coverage included published allegations that the McCanns had been responsible for their daughter's death, and a 2008 libel action ended in the paper paying out £550,000.
Defending the publishing of the accusations, he said: "I did not accuse them of killing their child. The story that I ran were the people that did accuse them and those were the Portuguese police." Following the revelation that the Express group was using convicted private investigator Steve Whittamore's firm's services as late as 2010 by the group's legal manager Nicole Patterson earlier in the day, Hill said he had "no idea" whether private investigators were ever used.
"To my knowledge, we never used anything at that time," he said.