Russian woman speaks of grief and confusion over husband eaten by friends
Olga Kurochkina: "One foot with toes, one finger, and the back of his skull with some hair. This is it. This is all I have left from the man I loved"
Thursday 04 April 2013
A Russian woman has spoken of her grief after finding out her husband was eaten by his friends.
The foursome was on a fishing trip when they got lost in a remote part of the Sakha Republic.
The fishermen got lost after their 4x4 was swept into a river during a flood.
In a lie detector test, 37-year-old Alexander Abdullaev admitted eating Andrei Kurochin, 44, but denied murdering him.
He claimed to police that he ate his friend "but not because I was hungry. I had another reason." He didn't say what the reason was. Another friend Alexei Gorulenko, 35, has not spoken to investigators. The fourth fisherman Viktor Komarov, 47, remains missing, presumed dead.
Olga Kurochkina has spoken out after a DNA test proved that a few fragments of bone which were found along with the other men were her husband's.
She told The Siberian Times: "Now I can be sure my husband Andrei is dead and his body was found there in the taiga."
"Can you imagine what I have left? One foot with toes, one finger, and the back of his skull with some hair. This is it. This is all I have left from the man I loved. Having just these remains, how can I say goodbye to him? I have got almost nothing to cry over...sorry, I can't think about it, I am losing my mind with this.
"Now I am sure they have eaten him. Now we know that Andrei died somewhere else and they dragged the body all the way through the snow, eating it step by step. But together with the remains of my husband there were also found the bones of animals.
"It means only one thing - they kept hunting somehow and if so, probably they were not that desperate.
"I know the word 'extreme' may mean different things to different people but honestly, if they could kill animals, why would they need to try eating a human body? And why - for God's sake - did they carry his head with them?"
The couple have a daughter Alyona, 21. She and her mother must wait for the results of the investigation, now extended until the summer.
"I can only hope it was not them who killed Andrei. I know that Abdullaev agreed to be checked on a lie detector and this was done. The experts say he did not kill Andrei but he did eat him because he was in despair and suffered terribly from hunger.
"I don't want to suspect them of murder, this would be just too much. But I do want them to be punished for what they did, because it is just outrageous to leave it like this."
"I never expected such horror could come into my life,' she said. 'It has ruined not just my life, but also the lives of all our relatives, and we are a big family. Now I want these cannibals to be punished. I fear our police is not keen to investigate this case properly. Our law does not say a word about cannibalism, it is not a crime, so our two survivors can be punished only for defiling a body and perhaps leaving a human being in danger."
Both survivors are now free, she said, and are categorised by the police as witnesses.
"Abdullaev is cooperating with the investigators, Gorulenko preferred to rely on Article 51 of the Russian constitution that allows him to keep silence. He did not agree to be checked by a lie detector and it can be done only voluntarily," she said.
Former family friend Gorulenko is also refusing to talk to her.
"I am still learning to live without Andrey. I never thought such a thing could happen.
"I was completely lost soon afterwards but now I am ready to make sure they won't give up on this investigation."
Investigator Dmitry Murashko said: "I can confirm that some of the test results have arrived.
"However, there is more to be done. Until everything is ready and in place, I can't really comment. The murder inquest is extended until June this year - so far this is all I can say."
Earlier Abdullaev said that Olga's husband "died from the cold after getting a leg injury. He was frostbitten and froze to death. Only after that did we start eating him, to survive."
He was also quoted saying: "We needed protein. We cut his flesh from the bones and ate it and it helped us to survive for ten days."
Though police refuse to comment, his lie detector test apparently bears out his claim.
Olga revealed earlier that "Andrei and Alexei were close friends for almost 20 years. They were passionate fishermen and often went away together."
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