MOORS Murderer Ian Brady will today begin a legal battle in which he will effectively ask for the right to die.
Brady, 75, has been on hunger strike in an attempt to die since 1999, and wants to be transferred from Ashworth maximum security hospital in Merseyside to a Scottish prison.
In Ashworth, he is sectioned under the Mental Health Act, but in a rare public hearing, which is expected to last eight days, he will try to convince a Mental Health Tribunal that he should be declared sane and moved into the prison system in Scotland, where he was born.
Brady has been caged since 1966 when he was convicted along with lover Myra Hindley of the murders of five young people between 1962 and 1965.
Four of the bodies were found on the bleak Saddleworth moors, above Holmfirth.
But Brady’s latest plan has been opposed by the family of Keith Bennett, the murder victim whose body has never been found.
Brady has never revealed where he and Hindley buried Keith, who was kidnapped four days after his 12th birthday in 1964.
And in a new twist, a study for a TV documentary claims that Keith may have been buried 40 miles from Saddleworth moor.
A photograph shows Brady at Ramshaw Rocks in Staffordshire holding a dog and experts claim the spot could be the site of graves of unknown victims.
Brady and Hindley took hundreds of pictures as mementoes of their killing sprees
The new documentary, due to be shown next month, calls on police to search the area close to Ramshaw Rocks.
John Ainley, the solicitor who acted for Keith’s mother, Winnie Johnson, until she died last year, said her family opposed Brady’s legal moves.
“Winnie certainly did not think that Ian Brady should be allowed to be transferred from hospital to prison.
“She took the view that he did not give her son and the other children he murdered any choice and consequently he should not be able to control his own fate.”
The legal tribunal will be held in Manchester and will be open to the press.
Brady’s previous attempts to force authorities to allow him to starve himself to death have failed. In March 2000 a judge described his hunger strike as part of his “obsessive need to exercise control”.
Police took Brady back to the moors above Holmfirth twice in 1987 in fruitless attempts to find Keith Bennett’s remains.
A further search was made 10 years ago.