The terrifying tale of the Express Train Killer

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Ramadan Abdel Rehim Mansour
AKA: Al-Tourbini (Express Train) Killer, Gharbia Killer
Country of killings: Egypt
His origins are as sordid as his end. To support his family, 12-year-old Mansour started working in a cafeteria in a train station in Cairo. The young Mansour was bullied by a local thug named “Al-Tourbini” – a moniker that he would later adopt himself. The thug would frequently beat Mansour and steal his money. Eventually the bullying took an even darker turn. Mansour stated that he was raped by this man, after which he was thrown off of a moving train – what would later become his own M.O. The fall left him severely injured and with permanent damage to his right eye as well as other injuries that left him hospitalized for a month. This experience changed Mansour forever.
Mansour during his trial
Originally from the Gharbia governorate of Egypt, Mansour was arrested for the murder and rape of at least 32 children (mostly boys) in 2006. Mansour, along with 6 accomplices,  liked to torture children aged between 10 to 14 years old on the top of the Express Train (hence Mansour’s dark nickname). The victims were sadly runaways, street children who had no one to report them missing. He committed his crimes in various cities across the country including Cairo and Alexandria while avoiding any police attention for over seven years.
His M.O. was simple and effective. Al-Tourbini and his accomplices would lure street children to the top of the train where they would rape and torture them, often with razor blades. He would either throw them off of the train dead, or barely alive, onto the tracks of incoming trains that would pulverize their small bodies. He also claimed to sometimes throw the bodies into the Nile, or at times buried them alive.
His downfall came after the police discovered the bodies of three children around the railroad tracks in early 2006. This led them to arrest two of Mansour’s accomplices, who confessed and ultimately pegged him as their leader . This came as a shock to Mansour’s brother, who was aghast that his quiet, calm brother could commit such horrific crimes. Mansour was also loved by his neighbors, who pitied him and considered him “slow” mentally. Clearly he was capable of projecting varying personas to the people in his life, the hallmarks of a true psychopath.
Many things stand out about this case. While laying claim to over 32 victims, only 15 bodies were ever found, although Mansour and his accomplices promised to inform the police about the location of the other 17 bodies, that were scattered around 8 other cities across Egypt this proved difficult due to the “mobile” nature of the crime scenes.
Perplexingly, the people in his home town of Tanta, as well as across Egypt, perhaps due to shock or a callous disinterest in the lives of street children, began using his nickname on store signs, cars, and even named sandwiches after him – the man responsible for the death of over 32 children that were dead to society long before they were thrown off of a train or buried alive.
Another oddity of this case, and perhaps an indication of the mental state of Mansour as well as his thinly veiled homophobia, the Gharbia Killer told police officers that he was possessed by a female Jinn (or spirit), that compelled him to rape and kill these boys, although he did tell officers that he enjoyed it.
He was convicted of the murders, sentenced to death, and was executed by hanging on 16 December 2010.
Mansour’s mark on the Egyptian psyche remains as potent as ever today, with any murderer of children in Egypt dubbed the “new Tourbini” – a dark testament to his awful legacy.

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