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Russia's 'chessboard killer,' currently awaiting transfer to prison for life,
Russia's 'chessboard killer,' currently awaiting transfer to prison for life, has said in an interview that he is unrepentant and nostalgic for the 15 years he was engaged in his gruesome business.

Alexander Pichushkin, 33, nicknamed the 'chessboard killer' for his habit of marking off his victims on the squares of a chessboard, was convicted last fall of 48 murders. Pichushkin says he took the lives of at least 60 people, but investigators have not found evidence to back up the claims.

In an interview with Tvoi Den tabloid published on Wednesday, Pichushkin said he was not sorry for what he had done as he had spent "so much time and energy," and the "desire to kill" had been with him since early childhood. He added repentance was a "silly formality" that did not even help reduce his sentence.

The killer received the maximum sentence as Russia has had a moratorium on the death penalty since 1996.

Pichushkin was cited by the paper as saying that he "did what he liked" for 15 years.

Most of the murders committed by Pichushkin are believed to have taken place between 2001 and 2006 in wooded areas in south Moscow's sprawling Bitsa Park. But Pichushkin said he began killing in the early 1990s.

Remembering a conversation with a police guard, who reproached him for his inhumane crimes, Pichushkin claimed he was on a kind of mission, the paper said.

"Living the way you live is a crime," Pichushkin told the guard as quoted by the paper. "Life is turning its back on people like you. It sends someone like me to you."

He at the same time admitted in the interview to having "enjoyed the process" of killing. "People's lives are not long. And it's cheaper than sausage." Asked if he believes in God, the convict said religion was "a nice fairytale to console the weak."

Pichushkin told the paper he has had nightmares, when he saw his dog, which he could not save. "It died through my fault," he said.

The killer said he would like to live in Mexico, as it was warm and there were forests. When he was told there were no forests in Mexico, he replied: "Are you saying there are no jungles there? As Freddie Kruger said, there's an 'Elm Street' in every town."

Typically, Pichushkin lured his victims into woods and plied them with vodka before battering them to death.

A Moscow court passed a life sentence on Pichushkin last October, saying he was a threat to society. The court also ordered Pichushkin to undergo psychiatric treatment, although sex therapists and psychologists earlier said he did not suffer from any known psychiatric disorders and could be considered sane.

In previous court testimonies, Pichushkin said he needed to kill "like others need food," that murder made him "almost a god," and that his first killing was like falling in love for the first time.


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