MONTREAL (Reuters) - Packages of body parts, pink papers and hand-drawn black hearts were sent to elementary schools and political parties, according to evidence shown Tuesday in the trial of a Canadian man who has admitted to killing and dismembering a Chinese student.
The evidence was presented in the second day of the trial of Luka Magnotta, 32, as the government put forward the case that Magnotta planned the killing of Jun Lin, a 33-year-old engineering student, for several months before the crime was committed in Montreal in 2012.
Magnotta has admitted to the acts but has pleaded not guilty to the charges, which include first-degree murder, committing indignities to Lin's body, broadcasting a video of the killing and mailing severed body parts. His lawyer has said Magnotta is not criminally responsible because he is mentally ill.
Jurors were shown photographs of the packages and the notes in a Montreal court, including one box that had the word "foot"written on it, presumably by police. The four packages were mailed in May 2012.
A forensic investigator testified that the packages that were sent to two Vancouver elementary schools contained pink tissue paper and menacing notes on pink paper.
One note included a poem: "Roses are red, violets are blue, the police will need dental records to identify you bitch."
Severed body parts were also sent to the offices of Canadian political parties in Ottawa. The investigator said the boxes also included pink tissue paper and hearts, and one note mentioned the name of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper's wife.
A publication ban imposed by the court at a preliminary hearing has barred media from reporting certain details of the case. Explicit details were publicised during the international search to capture Magnotta, but cannot be repeated until they are presented at trial. The jury was not being sequestered.
The government is trying to prove Magnotta started planning to kill a human being and make a movie of it at least six months before the 2012 killing of Lin. Prosecutor Louis Bouthillier said on Monday that an alleged email from Magnotta to a journalist in 2011, some six months before the killing, indicates Lin's murder was planned and deliberate.
Defence lawyer Luc Leclair said on Monday that Magnotta had been seen for years by different psychiatrists, and that he had been diagnosed in Montreal in 2012 with having a borderline personality disorder. Other psychiatrists have diagnosed him with schizophrenia, Leclair said.
The prosecutor said the jury will also see a video allegedly made by Magnotta that shows the killing taking place in Magnotta's Montreal apartment.
Lin's father, Diran Lin, travelled from China to attend the trial.
The killing of Lin in the early summer of 2012 shocked Canadians and grabbed headlines around the world. Magnotta was the subject of an international manhunt. He was arrested in an Internet cafe in Berlin, where he was reading about himself.