Two Pakistani Muslim men arrested for digging up corpses and eating them

The two brothers are said to have cut the legs from the body of a 24-year-old woman and cooked the flesh in a steel pot. Some of the gruesome dish had already been eaten when police raided the brothers’ home in a remote part of Punjab province.

UK GUARDIANA senior police officer, Malik Abdul Rehman, told the Guardian the brothers had been eating corpses for at least a year, but some local media reports alleged that they had been human flesh eaters for a decade.

Rehman said that the brothers, Muhammad Arif, 40, and Farman Ali, 37, seemed to have taken up cannibalism as an act of “revenge” after their mother died and their wives left them. “It became an addiction for them,” Rehman claimed. They boiled the flesh first, then cooked it in a curry, he said.

The investigation that led to their arrest was launched after the family of a 24-year-old cancer victim, Saira Parveen, visited her tomb on Sunday, a day after her funeral, to find the grave dug up and her body missing.

A police probe led to the brothers’ house, where they found the remains of Parveen’s body in one room, along with shovels, knives and other equipment, and the macabre meal. Previous victims include the body of a four-year-old girl, also taken from a local graveyard, the investigation found.

One problem for police and prosecutors is that cannibalism is so unusual that there is no specific punishment under Pakistani law. The brothers will be charged with digging up and desecrating a grave, which carries a punishment of only six months.