A pensioner who died in 2014 could have been behind a spate of sadistic killings in the 1970s and 1990s, German investigators say.
They are examining Manfred Seel’s links with the murders of five women and a teenage boy. Organs had been taken from all of the victims’ bodies.
The five women were all working as prostitutes when they died.
Investigators say it is possible the killer had an accomplice and that there may have been other victims.
The man has been identified as a landscape architect from the town of Schwalbach near Frankfurt who was 67 when he died.
Suspicions were raised after the pensioner’s death, when his daughter found a woman’s remains inside a barrel in a garage he had rented.
They belonged to Britta Simone Diallo, who had been living in Frankfurt and working as a prostitute.
Investigators say there is no doubt that he killed her.
Seel is suspected of carrying out the murders of Gudrun Ebel and Hatice Eruelkeroglu in 1971, Gisela Singh in 1991, Dominique Monrose in 1993 and Tristan Bruebach in 1998.
Investigators suggested that the 20-year gap may have been a time when he was busy, for example with raising a family.
The victims’ wounds matched injuries depicted in violent pornography found on Seel’s computer.
He also had more than 32,000 images involving cannibalism and glorifying violence.
The only male victim Manfred Seel is suspected of murdering is Tristan Bruebach, a 13-year-old boy whose throat was cut while he was walking home from school in 1998. The teenager’s mutilated body was found in a tunnel in Frankfurt.
The six murders all happened in and around Frankfurt. But detectives from the Hessen State Office of Criminal Investigations (LKA) say they are now examining hundreds of cold cases.
Police are looking for clues that might link Seel to further killings. They are also looking for people he knew and came into contact with