Human skull traffickers arrested

July 16, 2008 10:00:46 AM PDT
A police sting in the central African nation of Gabon has brought down a ring of alleged grave robbers. They're suspected of selling human skulls to makers of traditional medicines and amulets.

Police say eight suspects were arrested last week in connection with the sale of nine human skulls and a leg bone.

The investigation began after a number of families complained to police that their relatives' graves had been dug up or disturbed. The alleged ringleader tells local television reporters his group has been selling skulls since 2004.

He says he'd rob the graves in the middle of the night, and then have the skulls ground down into a powder that healers used in various drinks and amulets thought to give the wearer strength.