A Russian historian who robbed the graves of young girls and lived with their mummified corpses to practise black magic and ‘revive’ them from the dead is to be set free.
Anatoly Moskvin, 55, turned the bodies into dolls, dressing them up in clothes and putting on lipstick, a court in Russia was told.
But judges at the Leninsky District Court in Nizhny Novgorod are to free the graverobber after declaring him legally incompetent.
Moskvin has been an inmate at a secure psychiatric hospital for more than 10 years. Repeated requests for his release had previously been turned down.
But the chief physician of Psychiatric Hospital No. 2 petitioned the court to recognise Moskvin as legally incompetent.
The court upheld his petition on 2nd August.
This means that Moskvin may now leave the hospital and be placed under the care of a relative or a friend.
He could also be put in a social-medical facility, where he will be free to come and go, as well as receive visitors.
Before his arrest, Moskvin had dug up the graves of girls aged three to 11 in cemeteries and stolen their bodies from their coffins.
At his apartment, he mummified them, dressed them in girls’ clothes, and kept them as gruesome ‘dolls’.
Twenty-six such mummies were discovered when police raided the flat in November 2011.
Moskvin – said to speak 13 languages – later told investigators he practised black magic and wanted to revive people from the dead.
He claimed: “I felt sorry for the dead children, who could still live on.
“So I kept them until the time when science would have learnt to fight cancer, and revived them.”
Investigators believed he had desecrated as many as 150 graves.
A psychiatric evaluation determined that Moskvin had a form of paranoid schizophrenia.