Inspectors discovered two skulls and other human remains hidden inside teddy bears at a Mexico City airport shipping company. Company employees made the find when they ran the plush bears under an x-ray machine during a routine inspection, the Mexico City public prosecutor’s office said on Sunday.
The human remains “appear to have been recently exhumed,” the office said in a statement. Authorities contacted and arrested the man who was mailing the package, who said he bought the skills at a popular downtown Mexico City market. The man said the skulls “are in demand abroad by people who practice santeria,” an Afro-Caribbean syncretic religion.
Santeria, which mixes west African Yoruba traditions with Catholic rites, grew out of the slave trade to the Americas and is practiced in the Caribbean as well as places like Florida and Brazil.
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The statement did not say where the teddy bears were being mailed to.