Two men stole a hearse to ferry them around during a pub crawl - complete with a body in the back. The South Africans were caught when the vehicle ran out of gas at 3 a.m. and they asked three women, who they met in a bar, to give them a push.

But the ladies did not believe their drunken claims that the body in the coffin was a friend they were taking to a cemetery in Soweto for burial and called police.

It emerged that the men had taken the hearse after the driver had popped out to pick up some money.

Siphiwo Mkhize said: "What kind of people are these?

"Going shebeen (bar) hopping with a corpse takes the cake."

Police said the men had planned to dump the body but had not decided what to do with the hearse.

A spokesman told the Sowetan newspaper: "They failed to show us the papers identifying whose corpse it was, and they appeared to be drunk."

They are in custody and the body has been returned to a local mortuary.