Britain’s most evil murderer: Who is Robert Maudsley?

Dubbed Britain’s most evil murderer, Robert Maudsley has spent most of his life in solitary confinement. Channel 5 released a documentary about his story, but who is he?

Robert Maudsley has been in prison since the age of 21, the now 68-year-old has been kept in solitary confinement for 40 years. Channel 5 released a documentary called Wakefield: Evil Behind Bars, where they interview Maudsley’s nephew. Dubbed ‘Hannibal the Cannibal’ who is Robert Maudsley?

Robert Maudsley’s childhood

Robert Maudsley was born on June 26 1953 and is the eldest child of 12 siblings. Very early on in his life, Maudsley and his two brothers and sister were taken by child protective services. The three children were placed in a Catholic orphanage in Liverpool.

When Maudsley was 8-years-old, his parents came to collect him and his siblings, by then, his parents had eight more children. Shortly after returning to the care of his parents, Maudsley and his brother Paul, claim that their father physically abused them. A year later, when Robert Maudsley was ten, he was taken into foster care, leaving his parents and the rest of his siblings behind.

Robert Maudsley’s teenage years

By the age of 16, Maudsley had run away to London, where he became addicted to drugs. To support his addiction, Maudsley became a sex worker. Maudsley had reached out multiple times for help and was even admitted to psychiatric help after several suicide attempts.

It was during his time as a sex worker that Maudsley met his first victim, John Farrell.

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Robert Maudsley’s crimes

On March 14, 1974, Maudsley met John Farrell. After their encounter, Farrell boasted and showed Maudsley photographs of children he had sexually abused. Triggered by this, as he claimed he was sexually abused as a child, Maudsley killed Farrell, then handed himself to the police.

The courts decided that Maudsley was unfit to stand trial and charged him with manslaughter. He was sentenced to life in Broadmoor Hospital, which is a high-security psychiatric prison.

This is where Maudsley met his second victim, David Francis. Maudsley and another patient at the hospital, John Cheeseman barricaded themselves in a room with Francis, a convicted paedophile, and tortured him for 9 hours. Francis succumbed to the torture.

Once again Maudsley was charged with manslaughter and was sent to Her Majesty's Prison Wakefield, a high-security facility in West Yorkshire, England. This is where Maudsley found his final two victims.

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Maudsley had allegedly told his fellow inmates that he wanted to ‘murder seven people in a single day’. Maudsley’s first victim was Salney Darwood, who had been convicted of killing his wife. Maudsley lured Darwood into his cell and killed him. After this, he tried luring other inmates into his cell but no one would enter.

Instead, Maudsley set looking for his next victim, which ended up being Bill Roberts, who had sexually abused a 7-year-old. After killing the two prisoners, Maudsley went to the prison guard’s office and told the officer that ‘the roll call will be two short today’.

Robert Maudsley in solitary confinement

As Maudsley presented a threat to his fellow inmates, it was decided that he would be put in solitary confinement. In 1983, prison officials had deemed it too dangerous to keep Maudsley in an ordinary cell, so a special unit had been built for him in the prison’s basement.

Maudsley’s cell is made out of bulletproof Plexiglass and the cell is 5.5 x 4.5 metres. Maudsley spends 23 hours a day in the cell and is allowed out for an hour’s exercise a day accompanied by at least 5 prison officers.

Man killed two women and sexually abused bodies in mortuaries Man killed two women and sexually abused bodies in mortuaries