A MAN has admitted being the notorious Yorkshire Ripper hoaxer known as `Wearside Jack'.
John Humble, 50, of Flodden Road, Sunderland, was charged in connection with a series of letters and an audio tape which were sent to West Yorkshire Police and a newspaper during the hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper - Peter Sutcliffe - more than 25 years ago.
Yesterday Humble's defence counsel, David Taylor, told Leeds Crown Court his client admitted writing the letters and making the tape, but denied intending to pervert the course of justice.
Humble, a former labourer and window cleaner, was not in court for the hearing.
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.
Mr Taylor said Humble admitted he wrote the letters and made the tape. The only issue at stake now was one of intent.
Mr Taylor said Humble's not guilty pleas still stood.
Two of Humble's letters were sent directly to Assistant Chief Constable George Oldfield, formerly of Grange Moor, who led the investigation in the late 1970s.
A third letter was sent to a national newspaper office in Manchester.
After the letters and tape were received a huge police effort was concentrated on the Sunderland area after senior officers decided the Wearside voice on the tape was that of the murderer.
But the letters and tape were exposed as a hoax when Sutcliffe was arrested in 1981 and confessed to being the Ripper.
Sutcliffe, now 59, from Heaton, Bradford, was jailed for life that year for the murder of 13 women.
He is in Broadmoor Special Hospital.
One of his victims was teenage Huddersfield prostitute Helen Rytka, killed in Great Northern Street, Hillhouse.
He also attacked 16-year-old Theresa Sykes at Oakes, leaving her for dead.
Judge James Stewart adjourned the case until March 20.