Packages delivered to two Canadian schools contained a human foot and hand which which may belong a Chinese student whose alleged killer was captured during a worldwide manhunt this week.
Deputy Police Chief Warren Lemcke said he could not immediately confirm if they were connected to the Montreal killing of Jun Lin, 33, who was murdered and dismembered.
His former lover, porn actor Luka Magnotta, 29, is to be extradited from Germany, suspected of dismembering and eating his victim.
The British Columbia Coroner’s Service and the Vancouver police’s major crime investigators have been called in. One of Mr Lin’s hands, a foot and his head are still missing.
Last week, body parts were posted to the headquarters of the Liberal and Conservative parties.
Mr Lemcke said Vancouver police were still investigating the two incidents. The first package, containing what appeared to be a human hand, was opened by staff at False Creek Elementary School in Vancouver after 1pm local time yesterday. Another package containing what appeared to be a human foot was found by staff at St George’s School in the city later.
The investigation will centre on identifying the victim and determining from where the packages were sent. The schools were cordoned off as forensic examinations continued.
“There is no indication any student or staff has been targeted at any school,” Mr Lemcke said. “This must have been a very traumatic incident for all involved in the schools involved in opening the packages and the Vancouver Police Department will assist with any way we can with our victims services section.”
Anie Lemieux of Montreal police said they were in contact with Vancouver police but it was too early to say whether there is a connection with limbs known to be missing from Mr Lin.
“We can’t tell before a verification is made,” she said.
Meanwhile it emerged that Magnotta partied in Paris and evaded police for days before he was caught in Berlin.
Shortly after the killing, authorities say he flew from Montreal to Paris, where police hunting for him were inundated with hundreds of tips and alleged sightings, thanks to an Interpol alert.
The suspect monitored news reports about what police knew and took steps to evade authorities.
Witnesses contacted French police with claims of having seen Magnotta partying in the Bastille area of east Paris, said Christophe Crepin, a police union official.
One tipster said Magnotta drank a late-night Coca-Cola at a bar in the north-western Batignolles quarter, which police collected for fingerprints. Pornography magazines and an air-sickness bag from the plane he had taken from Montreal to Paris were found in a dingy hotel room where he stayed in Bagnolet, north east of Paris.
“He needed to be seen, and to party,” said Mr Crepin, who relayed information he received from agents in the judicial police unit that tracks fugitives. “Naturally some of the people who saw him broke out into a cold sweat when they recognised him.”
Magnotta’s refusal to stay low eventually got him caught. He was arrested on Monday while reading about himself at an internet cafe in Berlin after an employee recognised him from a newspaper photo and flagged down a police car.
He appeared before a German judge that afternoon and was held pending extradition. Authorities said he could be returned to Canada as early as this week.