Man who hid mother's body in freezer sentenced for fraud

Tian Shengjie
After his mother died of organ failure, an unemployed steel worker concealed her corpse for seven months in order to continue collecting her pension, court authorities say.
Tian Shengjie

A man who hid his mother’s dead body in a freezer for seven months in order to collect her pension was sentenced to 10 months behind bars for fraud, Baoshan District court authorities announced on Friday.

According to prosecutors, when a 68-year-old woman surnamed Fu died in her home in April last year, her son, surnamed Wu, bought a freezer to store her corpse and create the illusion that she was still alive. Wu concealed her death in order to continue receiving her pension of 4,000 yuan (US$571) per month, Baoshan’s procuratorate said.

A community worker eventually notified police after not seeing Fu for several months. Calls to the family's apartment also apparently went unanswered. Wu was eventually arrested in November and the 44-year-old confessed to his scheme, according to the procuratorate.

Tests showed that Fu died of multiple organ failure caused by factors including malnutrition, high blood pressure and diabetes, authorities said.

During Friday's hearing, Wu described himself as a steel mill worker who lost his job in 2016 and survived off his mother's pension.

Because of his confession and guilty plea, prosecutors called for leniency in Wu's sentencing. In addition to his jail term, Wu was also fined 10,000 yuan, according to the court.

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