BRATISLAVA, Slovakia – A would-be cannibal was arrested and in critical condition after being wounded in a gunbattle with officers during an undercover operation, officials said Wednesday. A policeman was also wounded.
The 43-year-old suspect used the Internet to search for a person who wanted to commit suicide and would agree to let him eat the body, police said. A Swiss citizen initially agreed but later changed his mind and informed authorities.
An undercover officer who pretended he was the would-be victim was used during Tuesday's operation, police said. He arrived at the eastern town of Kysak to meet the suspect, who opened fire seven times, striking one officer who remains hospitalized in serious condition.
TA3 television said the suspect, a father of two young daughters, lived in a nearby village of Sokol. Interior Minister Daniel Lipsic said he declined to say where he was from or further details.
Police spokeswoman Denisa Baloghova said Wednesday the suspect was shot several times and is unable to speak with investigators.
Jaroslava Oravcova, spokeswoman for a university clinic in the second largest city of Kosice, said the suspect underwent a five-hour operation and was in life-threatening condition.
Slovak authorities said the suspect agreed on a plan with the would-be victim to intoxicate him and then stab him in the heart with a knife in nearby woods. After that, he wanted to cut the body into pieces and gradually take them to his home to eat them.
Following a search of the suspect's home, Baloghova said the evidence gathered "indicates he wanted to commit the crime."