Yorkshire Ripper urges court to set him free

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London, Mar. 2 (ANI): British serial killer Peter Sutcliffe, who was convicted of murdering 13 women and attacking seven others in Yorkshire and Lancashire in late 1980, is reportedly seeking a High Court ruling which could see him freed.

Sutcliffe - dubbed as Yorkshire Ripper - is asking the High Court to grant him a "finite minimum sentence", The Sun reports.

Restrictions banning the reporting of Sutcliffe's freedom attempts were lifted on Monday, after Justice Mitting said he could see no reason why it should not be publicly reported that Sutcliffe is seeking a minimum sentence.

The Old Bailey judge at Sutcliffe's original trial Justice Boreham, recommended that he serve a minimum of 30 years behind bars - a period that will expire next year.

Sutcliffe's name is not on the Home Office list, published in 2006, of 35 murderers serving "whole life" sentences.

But neither has he ever been given a formal minimum sentence.

Sutcliffe, who has served almost all his sentence at Broadmoor Hospital, is applying for a decision on how long he must serve before he can go free.

It was reported last year he had been making good progress and a down-grading of his security risk was under consideration.

In the hearing at London's High Court today, his barrister, Nicholas Bowen QC, said fresh medical evidence indicates Sutcliffe's responsibility for his crimes was "diminished" by his paranoid schizophrenia.

The barrister added there was evidence that Sutcliffe believed he was "on a mission from God" after a "psychotic experience" in the 1960s when he heard a voice speaking to him from a gravestone.

An "unsatisfactory experience" with a prostitute two years later, in 1969, set him off on his killing spree. He started off killing prostitutes but the deaths later appeared to be random. (ANI)

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