Ripper hoaxer admits he is 'Wearside Jack'

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The Independent Online

A 50-year-old man admits being the notorious Yorkshire Ripper hoaxer known as "Wearside Jack", a court heard today.

John Humble, of Flodden Road, Sunderland, was charged in connection with a series of letters and an audio tape which were sent to West Yorkshire Police during the hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper more than 25 years ago.

Humble's defence counsel David Taylor today told Leeds Crown Court his client admitted writing the letters and making the tape, but said he denied intending to pervert the course of justice.

Humble, a former labourer and window cleaner, was not in court for the hearing during which the Judge James Stewart QC, lifted reporting restrictions on the case.

Humble has pleaded not guilty to four counts of perverting the course of justice, corresponding to each of the three letters and the audio tape he sent during the Ripper inquiry.

Today Mr Taylor said: "A defence statement has now been drafted whereby the defence concedes that he wrote the letters and in fact made the tape.

"The issue now is not one of whether it actually was him, it's solely the question of intent."

Mr Taylor stressed that Humble's not guilty pleas still stood.