A stash of caviar seized in Russia might have appealed to Hannibal “the Cannibal” Lector's refined palate.

The 385 pounds of caviar was found in a St. Petersburg morgue in the refrigerated space where human corpses are kept, reported the AP.

A morgue employee and a business man arrested in connection to the cadaver caviar caper claimed it was for the morgue employees' New Year's Eve party.

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New Year's celebrations are a big deal in Russia, and putting black market caviar on the menu is big business. The AP reports that Russian and Ukrainian authorities recently seized:

  • 220 pound of caviar in St. Petersburg markets

  • 249 cans of caviar worth $22,000 on the border with the Ukraine

  • 1,100 pounds of caviar in the far east region of Kharbarovsk

  • 47 sturgeon carcasses and 2.5 tons of live sturgeon in the Amur River basin

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The Beluga sturgeon, source of fine caviar, is a critically endangered species, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The unfertilized eggs, or roe, of the fish are what make up the prized and pricey delicacy beluga caviar.


Beluga caviar (Mai Le, Wikimedia Commons)