Frenchman who ate cellmate's lung gets 30 years jail

ROUEN, France Thu Jun 24, 2010 3:34pm EDT

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ROUEN, France (Reuters) - A French convict who killed his cellmate and ate his lung was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Thursday.

Nicolas Cocaign and Thierry Baudry had a fight when Cocaign asked Baudry to wash his hands after he had used the toilet during the night of January 2, 2007. Cocaign strangled Baudry and cut open his chest with a razor blade.

Thinking it was the heart, Cocaign then ripped out a piece of Baudry's lung and ate part of it raw before cooking the rest.

"What I did, I liked doing," said Cocaign, 37, who has a shaved head and whose face is covered in tattoos.

He will have to serve at least 20 years of his sentence.

Aware of his impulses, Cocaign had requested psychiatric help in 1998 and asked to be placed in isolation in 2006.

"It's exceptional to see a psychologically disturbed person say: I have to be treated," said defense lawyer Fabien Picchiottino, noting the "failure of the psychiatric, penitentiary and social system."

(Reporting by Marc Parrad; Writing by Sophie Taylor)

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