Cop serial killer The Werewolf murdered 80 people and said he was cleaner

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This is the man known as Russia's worst serial killer – nicknamed 'The Werewolf' after he murdered around 80 people in the harsh Siberian wilderness.

Mikhail Popkov was found guilty of 56 murders between 1992 and 2017, earning him a second life term in prison in Russia.

Popkov had already been imprisoned for killing 22 women in 2015.

The murderer, known as a 'maniac' and given the nickname of 'The Werewolf', used a similar tactic for a large chunk of his crime.

He would stop women and offer them a lift late at night while he was off-duty as a policeman in Angarsk, in the south-eastern part of the nation. He killed his victims using weapons including a hammer and an axe.

He would then dispose of their bodies in the woods, at the side of the road and in a cemetery.

He was also found guilty of raping 11 of the women.

In interviews with police, Popkov described himself as a "cleaner" who believed he was purging his area of prostitutes.

Russia's bloodiest serial killer was later convicted of murdering his 82nd and 83rd female victims.

The latest convictions relate to killings in 1995.

The 82nd victim was Natalya Zvereva who was sexually attacked and murdered in a Siberian forest.

Married father-of-one Popkov told interrogators he raped Zvereva then “we quarrelled and I murdered her.

“I hit her on the top of her head…. She fell down and did not show any signs of life.”

He threw her body into a river, he said.

The name of the 83rd victim was not disclosed.

Police believe Popkov – also called the Angarsk Maniac – may eventually confess to dozens more victims, with one investigator forecasting his macabre murder toll could be “closer to 200”.

A chilling video from his family archive shows the killer in the 1990s walking towards the camera clutching a knife and reciting a post-war nursery rhyme based on Nazi prisoners of war attacking locals.

“I will slash you. I will beat you. Now it’s your turn,” he says with a sinister smile.

A psychiatric evaluation diagnosed Popkov with homicidal mania, “a condition when a person has an irrational desire to kill someone”, reported TASS.

Nevertheless, the mass murderer was declared sane.

He will never be freed from jail. He is the only Russian sentenced to two life sentences.

Lt-Col Evgeny Karchevsky, lead investigator on the mass murder case, has said: “I am more than sure that Popkov committed 100-plus crimes, if not closer to 200.

“It was impossible for him to stop halfway.”

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