Eight suspected Satanists killed and ate four fellow cult members in ghastly rites in Russia, police say.
The killers, themselves in their teens and from the western city of Yaroslavl, lured the four youths to parties on the forested edge of Yaroslavl's city limits, before inducing them to drink and then chopping up their bodies.
AdvertisementThe remains of Anya Gorokhova, Olga Pukhova, Varya Kuzmina and Andrei Sorokin — aged between 16 and 17 and described by police as "Goths" — were found in a pit branded with satanic symbols and an upside down cross in the Yaroslavl region of Russia, 255km north-east of Moscow.
The four victims were lured in two separate incidents in late June, investigators believe. First the gang approached and dismembered Olga Pukhova and Anna Gorokhova on June 28, before attacking Varya Kuzmina and her boyfriend Andrei Sorokin the next day.
Investigators launched a citywide search before discovering the gruesome death site in mid-August.
The victims - all goths themselves - had told their families they were going to a nearby music festival. Instead, police discovered they had all phoned the flat of alleged Satanist cult leader Nikolai Ogolobyak, who lives 250 metres away from the site of the deadly ritual.
Kuzmina reportedly called a friend from Ogolobyak's apartment late the night of her murder and said: "I don't like it here, something's not right. I'll tell you about it later."
One of the eight arrested Satanists had spent time in a psychological facility, but was later released. He refused to renounce his beliefs, allegedly saying "Satan will help me avoid responsibility - I've brought him many victims."
"I made lots of sacrifices to him," one member of the gang was quoted by UK's Daily Mail as saying.
Another member claimed he turned to Satan after his prayers to God were not answered.
"It didn't bring me any money... I prayed to Satan, and things improved," he said.
Goth and emo culture have come under increasing scrutiny in Russia, where pierced youths draped in black are ubiquitous.
In June, the State Duma held a hearing on proposed legal amendments that would regulate emo websites and prevent goth-inclined teenagers from entering schools and government buildings.
The Gothic subculture is viewed quite apprehensively in the West. A few months ago a goth was spotting leading his girlfriend around with a dog lead and collar in London.
He was stopped from getting on a bus amid fears for passenger safety, a bus firm confirmed.
Dani Graves, 25, and his fiancee Tasha Maltby, 19, of Dewsbury, West Yorks, claimed they had been discriminated against by bus firm Arriva Yorkshire.
The black-clad couple said they had been told to leave one bus and prevented from boarding another.
The bus firm said safety came first, but it was investigating the complaint.
Of his girlfriend Graves said: "She's very animal like, she's kind of like a pet, as well as a partner."
He said he "does everything" for his girlfriend, including laying out clothes for her, feeding her and cleaning their house.
He said: "You wouldn't expect your cat or dog to do the washing up or cleaning round the house."