Grave robbers in central China pilfered a cemetery in Henan province last week, stole ashes from several grave sites and held them hostage. The robbers ripped open tombs at the Hongshan Cemetery in Xinyan City, according to the news website, where they spirited away ash-filled urns and left notes with phone numbers.

A woman calling herself only "Mrs. Liu," came to visit the tomb of her husband to find his ashes missing. When she called one of the numbers written on the notes left behind, the person on the other end demanded Y20,000 (more $3,000) for the urn's return.

Another family whose loved one's ashes were stolen paid the ransom, but the blackmailers still demanded more money and refused to give back the ashes, according to ifeng.

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