As daring tales of smuggling go, the recent case of two women trying to smuggle a dead body onto a plane must rank as one of the more bizarre instances.
Gitta Jarant and Anke Anuisc, both Germans living in Greater Manchester, have been released on bail until June 1st following the discovery on Saturday that Mrs Jarant’s husband, whom they were trying to check in to travel on an Easyjet flight to Berlin from Liverpool John Lennon airport, had in fact been dead for some 24 hours.
The 91-year-old was in a wheelchair, wrapped in a blanket and wearing sunglasses. When initially challenged, the women insisted that he was merely asleep and indeed they had convinced the taxi driver who had transported the party from Manchester to Liverpool that this was the case. Two of Mr Jarant’s grandchildren who were with the women were asked to corroborate the claim about their grandfather. But airport staff were less than convinced and alerted security; the two women were later arrested for failing to notify a death.
The man, Kurt Willi Jarant, is not thought to have died under suspicious circumstances despite the bizarre events that followed his death; he had been suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and had recently been in hospital with pneumonia.
Even after he was pronounced dead, one of the women asked staff whether they could still all board the plane, doubtless a cheaper way of repatriating a body than paying the customary charges which can run into thousands of pounds.