Armin Meiwes sliced up and ate a Berlin computer engineer begging to be devoured, was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison. The case came to light in December 2002, and the grisly details made world headlines. Meiwes filmed himself killing, disembowelling and cutting up the corpse of computer engineer Bernd Brandes, 42, whom he had met after posting messages in Internet chatrooms seeking “men for slaughter.”
“The flesh tastes like pork, a little bit more bitter, stronger. It tastes quite good. I sauteed the steak of Bernd, with salt, pepper, garlic and nutmeg. I had it with Princess croquettes, Brussels sprouts and a green pepper sauce,” said Meiwes. He said the meat was a little tough. He froze meal-sized portions of Brandes, some in the form of minced meat, and ate more than 20 kilograms of it in the months following the March 2001 killing.
During his two trials in 2004 and 2006, Meiwes said he had always dreamt of having a younger brother - “someone to be part of me” - and had become fascinated with cannibalism as a way to fulfil that obsession. His desires were fuelled by the Internet, where he had contact with around 400 men interested in cannibalism.
He found a perfect match in Brandes, who was obsessed with being eaten. “The first bite was of course a peculiar, indefinable feeling at first because I had yearned for that for 30 years, that this inner connection would be made perfect through this flesh,” Meiwes said in an interview.
He said that when he was a child, he had enjoyed his mother reading him the fairy tale “Hansel and Gretel,” about a witch who traps two children and prepares to eat the boy. “The bit where Hansel is to be eaten was interesting. You wouldn’t believe how many Hansels are whizzing around the Internet.” Police estimate that around 10,000 people in Germany alone share Meiwes’ fascination with cannibalism - either eating human flesh or being eaten.
Meiwes, serving his sentence in a prison in Kassel, central Germany and where he was born and lived with his mom in early years, could be eligible for parole after serving a mandatory 15 years in jail. A psychiatric examination conducted ahead of his trials concluded that he is not insane but has a “severely disturbed soul.”
"I want to undergo therapy, I know I need that and I hope it will be done at some point," said Meiwes.