Investigators in Devon have charged Axminster vicar Simon Peters with 214 counts of murder after a gruesome discovery of bodies buried in the grounds of his Church.
The corpses appear to have been ritually prepared and buried, many in their finest clothes, sealed in coffins and buried over six feet underground, possibly to hide the scent of decay from sniffer dogs.
Yet cruely Peters seems to have been taunting both the authorities and the relatives of the victims - each burial was accompanied by a stone plaque brazenly identifying the victim and their date of death. In some shocking cases the husband was buried and Peters would return to bury the widow next to him a few years later.
No-one was immune to his spree - babies, children, grown men and women, but it seems he had a particular fascination for older people, who made up the majority of his victims.
Questions have been asked about why it has taken so long for him to be brought to justice, especially with the clear evidence of the burials in plain sight for so long - there is evidence that Peters started his murderous rampage sometime in the early 1700s.