According to Swiss and Slovak reports, the unidentified Swiss man agreed to the bizarre attempted murder after he met his Slovak would-be devourer on an online chat forum.
The alleged cannibal, who was identified by The Slovak Spectator newspaper as 43-year-old Matej Čurko, had placed an ad on the Internet calling for a potential victim who’d be willing to commit suicide or be killed and let him eat the body. The Swiss initially agreed, but then reportedly changed his mind and alerted the authorities.
According to reports, a meeting between the two was organized for Tuesday morning in Kysak, Slovakia. An undercover agent deployed by the local police pretended to be the Swiss victim and lured the cannibal to a meeting, the paper said, but gunbattle erupted and Čurko was shot five times. He was arrested and hospitalized, but died from his gunshot wounds on Friday, the paper said, citing the TASR news agency.
Another officer was also critically injured in the operation.
According to the reports, the Swiss man had agreed to be sedated, stabbed in the heart and butchered in a secluded wooded area.
The cannibal had planned to eat the quartered body over time, the paper said, quoting local police commissioner Jaroslav Spišiak. Hidden in the woods, the body would have been laced with black pepper to disguise the scent and keep wild animals away from it. Police said they have recovered a number of knives, saws and a body bag at the crime scene, the paper said.
Čurko reportedly lived with his wife and two daughters in a family house in Sokoľ, in eastern Slovakia, TASR reported. He was a computer expert and hobby shooter who did not stand out in any way, according to neighbours and other villagers, said the Korzár daily.
Swiss daily 20 Minuten said both Swiss and Slovakian police are seeking to keep the identity of the would-be victim secret.
The latest case has strong similarities with the case of German cannibal Armin Meiwes, who in 2001 killed and ate a volunteer, Bernd Jürgen Brandes, whom he met online. He was arrested in 2002 and in 2004 was convicted of manslaughter, a conviction that was later upgraded to murder.