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The Past | The Previous

The Corpse Scam.

HARARE (Reuters) - Two Zimbabwean mortuary workers have been arrested on charges they rented out corpses to motorists to enable them to take advantage of special fuel preferences given to hearses.

Zimbabwe's state-owned Herald newspaper reported on Saturday that a mortician and an assistant at a public hospital were arrested on Thursday and would soon appear in court on charges of violating dead bodies.

The two are accused of running a racket under which they sold fake burial orders to motorists who then took the corpses and transported them to service stations.

That allowed them to jump long queues to fill their tanks.

After buying the fuel they returned the bodies in their coffins to the mortuary, the newspaper said.

Zimbabwe has suffered a serious fuel shortage since November when a barter deal with Libya for the supply of nearly 70 percent of its needs collapsed.