TRAVEL
10/17/2011 06:42 am ET Updated Dec 16, 2011

'Cannibal Fears' Over German Tourist Stefan Ramin, Missing In French Polynesia

Fears that a German tourist has been killed and eaten by cannibals on a remote island in French Polynesia have surfaced after a week-long hunt for his remains.

Stefan Ramin, a German 40-year-old business adviser went missing shortly after arranging to go on a traditional goat hunt with a local guide on the island of Nuku Hiva In French Polynesia last month.

It was the last time that Heike Dorsch, his girlfriend, says that she saw him.

According to Dorsch, the local guide, Henri Haiti, returned from the forest without Ramin, telling her there had been an accident.

Dorsch claims that when she tried to run to find help, Haiti chained her to a tree and abused her. It was only hours later that she unchained herself and alerted authorities.

Last week, a squad of 22 police officers found camp fire ashes containing human remains, including a jaw bone and teeth.
According to the Daily Mail, investigators believe that the "human body was hacked to pieces and burned".

The German newspaper, Bild, reported a prosecutor believed "the probability is that he was murdered by a cannibal and parts of him were eaten".

But police have denied the claims of cannibalism.

Nuku Hiva is historically known for cannibalism, but the practice was thought to have ceased. Deborah Kimitete, the deputy mayor, told local news: "No one can believe what has happened. It's horrible."

Testing will take place in Paris to conclude whether the ashes are those of Ramin, but French chief investigator, José Thorel, said it could take weeks. Haiti is still missing. Soldiers from the French overseas territory have joined the police hunt to track him down.