After several false starts, Meiwes found his participant and lived out his fantasy.
(Warning - Disturbing Content)
Looking for Someone to Slaughter...
This was the message that Armin Meiwes, a computer technician, posted on the Cannibal Cafe forums in 2000 in order to find a willing participant. Meiwes fantasised about becoming a cannibal and hoped that he could meet someone who fantasised about being slaughtered and eaten.
The forums were a place where people who fantasised about cannibalism could meet and discuss the act. Often the fantasies would leave the forums, and go to email and possibly meetings, but it was generally understood this was about 'fantasy' and 'role-play'.
However, after Meiwes received several responses, it seemed he wanted to take it a few steps further. Several people interested in this fantasy backed out, but soon Armin found himself with a willing participant.
Borg Jose responded and met with Meiwes at his home. After some chat and other activities Borg lay out on a table and waited to be killed, but at the last minute asked to be released. Meiwes happily obliged, as he did not want to kill someone unwilling to give themselves to him.
An engineer from Berlin, Bernd Jurgen Brandes, agreed to meet with Meiwes, as he wanted to be slaughtered and eaten by another person. The two met on March 9th 2001, and Armin’s fantasy was finally fulfilled.
That evening the men went up to Meiwe's bedroom in his vast Rotenburg Farmhouse. Brandes then swallowed a handful of sleeping pills, a bottle of cough syrup, and a bottle of schnapps. They made an agreement to both eat a portion of Brandes’ body before he was killed, and the penis was selected.
Meiwes then took Brandes to the bathroom and placed him in a bath to slowly bleed out. He then read a book for three hours before checking on Brandes again, who was still alive. Meiwes then stabbed him in the neck several times until he finally died.
Meiwes had specifically prepared a 'slaughter room' where the dismemberment took place. Brandes’ body was suspended off the floor on a meat hook to bleed out. He then totally dismembered the corpse, eating parts and storing other parts in a freezer for later.
Over the next ten months Meiwes consumed 20kgs of Brandes flesh.
Was a Crime Committed?
They found body parts, but more importantly, a two hour video that documented the killing and butchering. In December 2002 Meiwes was arrested and charged with murder.
The resulting court case received much media attention globally, and soon arguments and debates began over whether a crime had really been committed. The internet forums, emails and video clearly showed that Brandes was a willing participant, and knowingly participated in his own demise.
During the trial the video of the killing and butchering was shown, and this caused many of those who viewed it to seek help and support, after the mental shock of viewing such footage. This video was never made public, although stills are located on the internet, though these are, understandably, quite graphic.
Meiwes was eventually found guilty of manslaughter and was sentenced to eight years in prison.
In 2005 Meiwes was retrialled and sentenced to life in prison for the murder, as towards the end, Brandes was so groggy from the alcohol and sleeping pills, he did not have the ability to say no if he had chosen to do so at the last moment.
Meiwes has since expressed regret for his actions. He has become a model prisoner and has helped consult with police in other suspected cannibal murders. He is now a vegetarian.
A Question for You...
What do you think?
Does this show willingness and intent on the part of the victim?
In your mind, what does this mean for the case (regardless of what the court found) ?