A South African man pleaded guilty on Monday to stabbing to death another man in an incident that may have involved cannibalism.
Police responding to the scene allegedly found the suspect, a tradesman, eating the victim's heart with a knife and fork.
When the suspect was originally taken into custody in June 2014, he reportedly claimed the altercation had its source in a challenge to his masculinity.
The incident which occurred in Gugulethu, a township near Cape Town, South Africa, may instead have involved a jealousy-related scuffle with the victim about the victim's girlfriend.
"He told police after he was arrested that he gouged out [the victim's] heart and ate it as he lay bleeding to death 'to show him that I am not a moffie [gay],'" the Daily Mail reported.
The suspect, a window tinter identified as Andrew Chimboza, 35, claimed he was visiting the woman's home to check on his past work there. That's when things got out of hand.
"He was confronted by the woman's jealous boyfriend, Mbuyiselo Manona, 62, who accused him of sleeping with her and hit him in the face. Picking up a fork, Chimboza plunged it into Mr Manona's neck before slitting his throat. As he lay bleeding to death, Chimboza then gouged out his heart before eating it with a knife and fork," the Mirror of London described.
In court this week, Chimboza expressed regret for what happened on the night in question. "I am sorry for what I have done and I have genuine remorse. I then took a knife and slit his throat and continued to stab him. I was so angry that I did not remember how many times I stabbed him or where."
Chimboza allegedly added that he went for the heart because the organ was "full of hatred and jealousy," and also admitted that his actions "exceeded the boundaries of self-defense."
Calling the offense "very disturbing," the prosecutor noted, however, that "Because the removal of the heart was not the cause of death per se, it does not therefore have too much bearing on the plea of murder."
The victim's sister said that "I am angry that he is denying that he removed the heart while my brother was still alive," Times Live of Johannesburg reported.
The sentencing hearing in the "heart attack" case is ongoing in a Cape Town court this week, with the court considering both mitigating and aggravating factors. The defendant could face life imprisonment.
[image credit: Kenshinb]