Author`s name Alex Naumov

Pathologist cut out dead people's eyes to help children

Scandal broke out in the Khanty-Mansijsk Autonomous District, Russia. It was found out that in the local mortuary somebody cut out eyes of dead people. The ex-head of the mortuary is now targeted in the investigation as a witness.

These details revealed in the town of Nizhnevartovsk after the sister of a dead man, while taking the body from the mortuary, realized that her dead brother had his eyes removed. She headed for the police station and told them about what had happened. But the police decided not to open a criminal case. Only 18 months later the woman’s complaint letter got on the desk of Yuri Zolotov, the ex-head attorney of Ural Federal District. Zolotov decided to investigate this case.

In this criminal activity 94 people suffered. Before decedent was to be buried, his eyes were either sewn up, or covered with fabric. Mortuary specialists laid waxwork under eyelid. For a long time nobody didn’t notice anything special, because donors were usually homeless people that nobody would bury. The crime could remain unknown if one woman wouldn’t come to get the body and notice absence of eyes.

The removal of eyes from dead people is not a crime by itself, but for these operations special official documents are required.

Melnikov’s purposes for eyes removal were noble – he gave the organs to infant hospital for cornea transplantation surgery.

Now Mr. Melnikov is in Nizhnevartovsk under a written pledge not to leave town.

Translated by Lena Popina