THE shocking trial has begun of a ‘Hannibal Lecter’ fan who reportedly confessed to caving-in a fellow student’s head with a hammer before it’s thought he ate his liver.
Lawyer Christian Stuenkel, who represents the family of the victim, said the fictional serial killer was the accused’s biggest idol and he “watched all the films and series again and again.”
CEN The Vietnamese student – named only as Nhat T – has appeared in court in Germany
The suspect, who was only identified as 24-year-old Vietnamese student Nhat T.,appeared for the first time in the district court of Gera in the German state of Thuringia.
Like his hero Lecter, the main character in the series of novels written by Thomas Harris and which have become very successful films, Nhat T. was handcuffed as he was led into the courtroom.
Lacking Lecter’s trademark face mask which covers his mouth and nose, he instead hid his face inside his hoodie.
In August 2018, the student, who attended university in the central German city of Jena, gave himself up to the cops and reportedly admitted to killing his Chinese classmate Chenxi L in August last year.
During the trial, the court hopes to find out what Nhat T did with the body after he allegedly smashed his head in with the hammer.
Investigators found the body of the Chinese student, 27, hacked to pieces and stuffed into plastic bags.
Some body parts were found by a special diving team in the River Saale while the victim’s head was found under a bridge.
Prosecutor Martin Zschaechner confirmed that the victim’s liver was missing from its body and an autopsy showed signs of it being removed by a sharp instrument such as a knife.
As the liver was never found, prosecutors believe the suspect might have eaten it given his great fondness of his hero Hannibal Lecter.
Prosecutor Zschaechner said: “The film ‘Hannibal’ definitely played a big role in the defendant’s life. The liver was selectively removed (from the body).”
The prosecutor was referring to the 1991 ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ film, when the infamous cannibal psychiatrist says his famous line: “I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti.”
According to the prosecutors, Nhat T. lured Chenxi L. into his student flat by telling him that a package had arrived for him, turning up the music volume and striking him with a hammer.
Afterwards, he allegedly hacked the body into pieces in the bath tub.
Prosecutors suspect the defendant might suffer from schizophrenia.
A mental assessment by a court psychologist has been ordered to find out more about the Vietnamese student’s state of mind.
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According to the prosecution, Nhat T. searched for terms such as ‘Hannibal Lecter’, ‘secure killing methods’ and ‘psychological illnesses’ around 30,000 times on the internet before the murder.
Before the murder inside student housing accommodation in Jena, the suspect allegedly watched ‘The Silence of the Lambs’ several times and the sequel ‘Hannibal’.
Investigators also suspect that the student acted out of greed as he stole the victim’s computer and mobile phone and ordered expensive goods on the internet using his money.
The trial is ongoing.
CEN Divers search for corpses in the River Saale in August 2018
CEN The suspect is said to have confessed to police shortly after his arrest
Kobal Collection – Rex Features The defendant reportedly said Hannibal Lecter was his biggest idol
CEN Nhat T is being tried at the Regional Court in Gera, in Thuringia
CEN The student housing complex where the victim was murdered