The new owner of a funeral parlour got a shock when she discovered the rotting remains of a corpse that had apparently been forgotten for nine years.
The bones are said to belong to a former policeman who died ten years ago, whose body had been hidden by his son in order to collect his pension.
The body had initially been seized as evidence while the son was prosecuted and then jailed for six months.
It was then was handed over to the funeral parlour for burial but in a paperwork mixup, it was stored in a greenhouse at the back of the property and completely forgotten about for nine years.
Emilie Sarazin, the new director of the Arras funeral agency, in the city of Arras in the Pas-de-Calais department, northern France, found the bag full of rotting human bones on November 6 and instantly raised the alarm.
The body was transported to the local forensic institute for identification.
The new funeral home director found no trace of the corpse in the old records and it was initially a mystery where it had come from.
But it has now been discovered that the bones belonged to the policeman who died in April 2008.
“There was a failure somewhere, at least a sign of negligence on the part of the funeral agency. They should have contacted the family or the town hall if it was a matter of covering costs,” police said.
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The investigation is ongoing as the matter is being handled as a case of undermining the integrity of a deceased person.
A hearing of former employees and of the dead man’s family to gather evidence is now being scheduled.