German prosecutors say the killing of a 44-year-old man in Berlin earlier this month has evidence of humanitarianism.
A 41-year-old man was arrested Thursday at his home on suspicion of murder with sexual intent, where the victim’s bones were found at the scene.
“The suspect was interested in humanitarianism,” said Martin Steltener, a spokesman for the Berlin prosecutor’s office. “He searched online for the subject.”
Steltener said it was unclear whether the victim was also interested in humanism. According to a report by Der Spiegel, the two Germans both contacted each other online through a chat forum called Planet Romeo.
On November 8, a field on the north coast of Berlin, near the border with the state of Brandenburg, collapsed into the remains of a human foot.
Investigators on the bones discovered bite marks, although they said it was not yet clear from humans or any animals.
The man was eventually found as a 44-year-old high-voltage technician who went missing on September 5 from his shared apartment in Berlin’s Lichtenberg district.
Searching for a specially trained sniffer dog, police eventually arrived at the apartment of a 41-year-old suspect, a high school math and chemistry teacher, where they discovered knives, a bone-cutting saw used by surgeons and a large cooling box.
Newspapers Fig Investigators also discovered 25 kg of sodium hydroxide, a reagent that can be used to dissolve body tissues. The suspect was quoted as claiming he wanted to make soap.
The full names of the victim and the suspect have not been released due to confidentiality.
Reports of arrests have become parallel to the infamous “Rottenberg cannibal” case. In 2006, a German court convicted Armin Miuis of murder and murdered a man seen online and disturbed the peace by eating him. Mewis is serving a life sentence.
Like arresting a suspect in the Berlin murder case, Mewis was quick to talk to prosecutors and share his emotional details.
In 2015, a German police officer was convicted of murdering a man he met on an Internet chat forum dedicated to Normans. Prosecutors said the victim imagined eating, but found no evidence that the suspect actually did so.