A Japanese cannibal who murdered and then devoured a woman in France in 1981 is currently a free man and has said he wants to taste human flesh again before he dies.

On June 11 1981, the shocking crimes of Issei Sagawa – nicknamed the Kobe Cannibal – came to light.

The then-32 year old had invited his classmate at the famed Sorbonne University in Paris to his Parisian apartment for dinner.

That classmate was Renee Hartevelt, who was only 25 at the time.

Shortly after arriving at Sagawa’s place, she was shot in the neck with a rifle – while sitting reading some poetry – by the Japanese man who proceeded to pass out upon realising what he had done.

He had no hidden his love of wanting to eat human flesh

When he came to, however, he went on to commit unspeakable acts which still shock the world today.

He began to have sex with her corpse, during which he attempted to start eating the poor woman’s flesh.

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But morbidly realising his teeth weren’t sharp enough, he went out to buy a butchers knife, and began dismembering her and eating the flesh.

His cannibalistic actions were not, however, spur of the moment.

According to reports, he said: “It’s simply a fetish.

“For example, if a normal man fancied a girl, he’d naturally feel a desire to see her as often as possible, to be close to her, to smell her and kiss her, right?

Renee Hartevelt, a 25-year-old Dutch student, was Sagawa's victim
Renee Hartevelt, a 25-year-old Dutch student, was Sagawa’s victim

“To me, eating is just an extension of that.

“Frankly, I can’t fathom why everyone doesn’t feel this urge to eat, to consume, other people.”

“Almost every night I would bring a prostitute home and then try to shoot them from behind.

“It became less about wanting to eat them, but more an obsession with the idea that I simply had to carry out this ‘ritual’ of killing a girl no matter what.”

Crime scene photos of the dismemberment meal show 12 paper plates filled with human body meat.

Rather chillingly, he described the moment he cut open the women’s bottom, which he said looked like “corn” due to several layers of fat.

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He admitted the crime, but was declared mentally unfit for trial
He admitted the crime, but was declared mentally unfit for trial

“The moment I saw the meat, I tore a chunk off with my fingers and threw it into my mouth. It was truly a historical moment for me,” he recalled.

“What I truly wished was to eat her living flesh.

“Nobody believes me, but my ultimate intention was to eat her, not necessarily to kill her.”

The rest of the body was disposed of, and her legs, torso and head were dumped into a suitcase.

He took the suitcase to a nearby park, where he attempted to dump it but the blood pouring out of is was not exactly subtle and French police were called.

He admitted to the crime, and told police that he killed the girl to “eat her flesh”.

He now roams the streets of Japan as a free man
He now roams the streets of Japan as a free man

But shockingly, having waited two years for a trial, he was declared legally insane, unfit to stand trial and the charges were dropped.

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He was placed in a mental institution before being deported back to Japan and housed in an institution there.

Due to France dropping the charges, Japanese officials were unable to get hold of sealed court documents – and Sagawa was left to walk free, which he still is to this day.

He can be found living with his brother in Tokyo, where he has suffered two heart attacks and now has diabetes.

A recent interview with him showed that he still has chilling urges to eat human flesh.

When he was arrested in 1981, he told police he just wanted to eat "living flesh"
When he was arrested in 1981, he told police he just wanted to eat “living flesh”

He said: “The desire to eat people becomes so intense around June when women start wearing less and showing more skin.

“Just today, I saw a girl with a really nice derrière on my way to the train station. When I see things like that, I think about wanting to eat someone again before I die.

“What I’m saying is, I can’t bear the thought of leaving this life without ever tasting that derrière that I saw this morning, or her thighs.

“I want to eat them again while I’m alive, so that I can at least be satisfied when I die.”

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