A German who confessed to killing, dismembering and eating another man who allegedly agreed to the arrangement over the Internet was convicted Friday of manslaughter and sentenced to 8 1/2 years in prison, according to the Associated Press.
Armin Meiwes, a 42-year-old computer expert, had no “base motives” in the crime, a state court ruled, sparing him a murder conviction.
Prosecutors had sought a life sentence, calling Meiwes a “human butcher” who acted simply to “satisfy a sexual impulse.” They said they would appeal the verdict.
The defense argued that since the victim volunteered to be killed and eaten, the crime should be classified a mercy killing, which carries a five-year maximum penalty.
Before the verdict, Meiwes looked calm, chatting with his attorney and occasionally grinning for cameras allowed inside the courtroom. After the sentence was read, he shook his lawyer’s hand and nodded curtly to the photographers.
Explaining the verdict, Presiding Judge Volker Muetze said Meiwes’ intention was not evil but “the fulfillment of his fantasy.”