A homeless man in France will be charged with animal cruelty after police found over 80 abused cats in his squat, several of which had been beheaded, a police source said Monday.
The grisly tale came to light last Wednesday when a woman spotted the 48-year-old man trying to sell "four, month-old kittens, not yet weaned, in a bad state", the source said.
She alerted the police who arrested him for cruelty and carrying a weapon.
The following day police, accompanied by the Society for the Protection of Animals (SPA), went to a shuttered petrol station in Rosny-sous-Bois east of Paris where the man was squatting, and uncovered chilling scenes of cruelty.
After seven hours they rescued 57 "sick and under-fed" cats which had been locked in a room, as well as 22 dead felines showing "obvious acts of cruelty" such as decapitation.
On a second visit on Friday they found another four cats. All animals were handed to the SPA.
The suspect underwent a psychological examination and will face trial in early June, according to the police sources.