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The Sun Turns on Self-Described “Leading Criminal Profiler” Over False Claims

The Sun, December 2018:

WEIRDOS are pretending to be some of Britain’s most hated and vilified villains on Facebook including serial killers and paedophiles.

…Leading criminal profiler and former detective [Paul] Harrison said news that people are pretending to be the monsters was “disturbing” and “sinister” and he said there was a danger they could think they are that individual.

The Sun, May 2019:

THE Jeremy Kyle Show has been slammed for turning killer dad Mick Philpott into a ‘celebrity’ before he started a deadly blaze which took the lives of six of his kids.

…Leading criminologist and criminal profiler Paul Harrison said ITV had ’empowered’ the violent criminal and inflated his ego in a way which could have led to him committing more offences.

The Sun, July 2019 – erm…

A PHONEY serial killer expert exposed by The Sun yesterday apologised for deceiving his fans.

Paul Harrison, who has earned thousands from books and sell-out talks claiming to be an FBI profiler, said he was “weak and vulnerable”.

…a string of former FBI agents — and even the Yorkshire Ripper — branded him a liar and said he had made it all up.

It has also emerged he faked his own death to get out of a copyright court case which would have left him a huge legal bill if he had lost.

Harrison is the author of a number of true crime works. His most recent opus, Mind Games: Inside the Serial Killer Phenomenon, has now been withdrawn from sale by his publisher, Urbane Publications, just a few months after a book launch at the Soho Collective that featured an actor performing as Hercule Poirot and the floor decorated with a police-style “dead body” outline. As reports note, the book came with a blurb by Martina Cole.

Harrison was the subject of a gushing profile in the Mirror in 2018, which included grandiose claims about having been introduced to American serial killers:

Sutcliffe was one of ­nearly 80 of the world’s worst killers to face a grilling from Paul, who earned his Mindhunter tag for ­being one of the first British police officers to work at the FBI unit immortalised in the hit US telly drama.

His “client list” reads like a Who’s Who of history’s biggest monsters including Charles Manson, John Wayne Gacy, Donald “Black Panther” Neilson, Aileen Wuornos and real-life Hannibal Lecter Robert Maudsley.

According to that article,

Now considered one of Britain’s leading experts on serial killers and their psyche, he often acts as an adviser to other professionals as well as TV and film producers and directors.

I’ve previously expressed scepticism about the supposed expertise and claims of profilers here and here.

Alongside his crime output, Harrison has written books about footballers, and, more exotically, his oeuvre includes The Encyclopaedia of the Loch Ness Monster, which “includes everything you will ever want to know about the loch and its mysterious inhabitant.”

UPDATE: There is also a journalist named Paul Harrison, who has written a couple of true-crime books in collaboration with Professor David Wilson, a noted criminologist. This is a different person from the Paul Harrison discussed above.

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