SOFIA, Bulgaria (AP) — Authorities in Bulgaria said Wednesday that the bodies of seven people were discovered outside a cemetery near the capital.
Police said that according to initial data, the bodies buried in a forest without coffins belonged to older adults who had died of natural causes.
One of the theories investigators are exploring is that the people lived in various hospices in Sofia and were buried as part of an unregulated funeral scheme.
A 51-year-old funeral agent has been detained in the case and charged with fraud. Authorities believe he was part of a larger group and more bodies could be discovered.
Police alleged the agent took the bodies from care homes, supposedly for cremation, and instead buried them in the forest close to the cemetery.
Pre-trial proceedings, including DNA tests of the deceased, have started in the case.