And no, he did not interview Charles Manson, nor play professional soccer.
Famed French serial killer expert Stephane Bourgoin has admitted to being a serial liar.
Bourgoin, 67, has built a career as a leading expert on murderers, having written more than 40 books and hosted numerous television documentaries on the subject. He has been a guest lecturer for trainees at the French national judiciary police academy and toured France giving speeches about his experiences, according to CNN.
Bourgoin claimed to have interviewed over 70 serial killers -- including Charles Manson -- trained at the FBI’s base in Quantico, Virginia, and been married to a woman who was murdered by a serial killer.
He even said he played professional soccer for the Parisian team Red Star.
But his meeting with Manson, his FBI training, and his soccer pedigree have turned out to be fabrications after an anonymous group named 4e Oeil called him out for lying in a series of YouTube videos that have now been removed.
"I have reached the moment of coming clean. My lies have weighed me down," Bourgoin told Paris Match magazine. "Sometimes I make films in my head."
In an interview with Le Parisien on Tuesday, he added, "I am profoundly and sincerely sorry. I am ashamed of what I did, it's absolutely ridiculous."
A spokesperson for 4e Oeil told CNN the group became suspicious of Bourgoin in August 2019 when they discovered he was plagiarizing books on serial killers originally written in English and found inconsistencies in his stories during television interviews.
Bourgoin has now admitted to making up much of his life story, describing himself as a "mythomaniac."
"It is true that when I was in the public eye I sometimes happened to embellish, to extrapolate, to exaggerate my importance because I always had the deep feeling of not really 'being loved,'" he told Le Parisien.
The story of his fake wife was based on a woman he met a few times at a bar in Florida in the 1970s.
The woman, Susan Bickrest, was murdered by the serial killer Gerald Stano in 1975 at the age of 24. Stano later admitted to killing 41 women and was executed in 1998.
"It was bulls--t that I took on," Bourgoin told Le Parisien. "I didn’t want people to know the real identity of someone who was not my partner, but someone who I had met five or six times in Daytona Beach, and who I liked."
Bourgoin went on to explain why he is now confessing.
"This has weighed on me immensely for two, three years," he said. "Very strangely, there's the relief of having told the truth, and from the shame, a will to redeem myself, to never again say nonsense like that in public."
However, per CNN, the spokesperson for 4e Oeil said they want Bourgoin to stop working as a serial killer expert.
"We sincerely doubt that his excuses, even though he has presented them, are indeed sincere," the group said.