A judge has ruled that British serial killer Ian Brady will not be allowed to have the burial ceremony that he’d requested — one in which his ashes may have been scattered near the very site where he murdered several of his victims.
High Court judge Sir Geoffrey Vos has ruled not to entrust the ashes and burial proceedings of “Moors Murderer” Brady with his lawyer and the executor of his will, Robin Makin, over concerns that Brady’s chosen burial will cause “offence and distress” for the families of his victims, reports the BBC.
Brady was one of the infamous Moors Murderers along with his girlfriend Myra Hindley.
The couple would lure children out to the moors outside Manchester, where they would sexually assault, murder, and bury them. Between 1963 and 1965, the two of them killed five children and teens in the Manchester area.
The two were finally caught in 1965 when David Smith, Hindley’s 17-year-old brother-in-law, witnessed Brady beating Edward Evans, a teenager he had picked up from a local train station, to death with the flat of an axe.
Smith told his wife, who immediately called the police. Brady was arrested and was held in prison for 19 years before being transferred to Ashworth Psychiatric Hospital, where he lived out the rest of his days.
He died on May 15, 2017 from restrictive pulmonary disease at the age of 79.
Now, the question of what is to be done with his remains has become paramount.
After rumors abounded that Brady had requested for his ashes to be spread across the very moors where he killed and buried his victims, authorities launched a legal inquest into what exactly would be done with the murderer’s remains.
When Makin failed to make proper arrangements for the disposal of Brady’s body after five months, two city councils that encompassed the areas of the murders decided to bring the case of the disposal to the high court.
“We know that the relatives and residents alike found even the suggestion that his ashes may be scattered over Saddleworth Moor to be abhorrent and distressing, especially because 13-year-old Keith Bennett [one of Brady’s victims] has never been found,” the councils said after the hearing.
Though the exact method of disposing of Brady’s body has not been decided, the matter has been taken out of the hands of Makin, and handed over to a council officer.
The decision was made after Makin refused to reveal what he planned to do with Brady’s ashes, and would not definitively say that he did not plan to scatter the ashes on the moors.
“I am satisfied also that it is both necessary and expedient for the matter to be taken out of Mr. Makin’s hands,” Vos said.
Vos also ruled that the fifth movement of the Symphonie Fantastique by 19th-century French composer Hector Berlioz will not be played at Brady’s cremation, per his request.
After reading that Berlioz had said the work invoked a funeral of witches and monsters, Sir Geoffrey stated, “I have no difficulty in understanding how legitimate offence would be caused to the families of the deceased’s victims once it became known that this movement had been played at his cremation.”