Funeral directors kidnap blogger's ashes for posthumous marriage

Three men in China detained for selling blogger's ashes for a “ghost marriage” marriage “. Reported by the South China Morning Post.

The blogger was broadcasting live and committed suicide in front of the audience. She stated that this is her last show and that she has suffered from depression for a long time. Later, the woman's relatives accused several Internet users of incitement to commit suicide.

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The woman's ashes were kidnapped by three funeral directors with the intention of selling him to the local family, which is engaged in an illegal business in “ghost marriages.” It is a superstition-based tradition that originates from ancient China. The man's family posthumously finds him a bride – a deceased woman – and bury her ashes or body with him. It is believed that a lonely grave can harm the prosperity of the descendants of the family. The Chinese government banned “ghost marriages” in 1949, and in August 2006 made the sale of dead bodies illegal. By law, kidnappers face up to three years in prison.

A staff member named Shao replaced the ashes after the woman's body was cremated, while a colleague named Lei took him out of the funeral home by car. A third funeral director named Zhang was in charge of liaising with the customer. The police detained the men after a tip from one of their colleagues.

The organizers of “ghost marriages” can earn up to 70 thousand yuan (819 thousand rubles) if the buyer is satisfied with the background of the deceased woman. Zhang's wife said the undisclosed buyer did not agree to “marry” her deceased son to the woman.

The blogger's ashes were confiscated and returned to her family in her hometown in Hunan province.

< p> The Shandong Civil Affairs Department announced its intention to end “ghost marriages” and promised to conduct inspections at all funeral agencies.

Earlier it was reported that the body of an 18-year-old girl who died 20 years ago was stolen from a grave in China. Her parents speculate that her daughter's remains were kidnapped to enter into a “ghost marriage.”