French Serial Killer Marcel Petiot Arrested After Police Found "Heaps of Bodies" And "Twisted Arms And Legs" Piled Up Through His Manor

Published on January 11, 2022

Marcel Petiot, commonly known as ‘Doctor Satan’, was a French serial killer who operated from the mid-1930s till March 1944. The true number of victims remains unknown, but they claimed Petiot is at least responsible for 63 gruesome murders. They arrested him after police found his ‘murder farm’ at 21 Rue Le Sueur in Paris.

Neighbors who lived next to 21 Rue Le Sueur never knew what Marcel Petiot, the eccentric doctor who rarely spent his time there, was ever up to.

For months, they have seen the black smoke escaping from his home, but thought of it as nothing more than an illegal brewing operation than the worst.

Surely they would have never guessed that the smoke they have been breathing in for months was as macabre as it actually was.

The smell of decaying and burning human flesh registered neither.

However, French police received a call from a neighbor, Andree Marcais, the adjacent neighbor, that on this day of March 6th, 1944, the smoke was extra heavy.

In fact, others had noticed it affected as well as the entire street with hacking coughs.

Clearly, a fire had broken out into the home.

Twisted Arms and Legs

Marcel Petiot's murder farm at 21 Rue le Sueur in Paris. Police found the chopped up remains of too many victims to count.

Marcel Petiot's murder farm at 21 Rue le Sueur in Paris. Police found the chopped up remains of too many victims to count.


The police arrived at 21 Rue Le Sueur, followed by the fire brigade, and after one firefighter saw an outline through the window; the door was quickly entered the residence.

Despite the total darkness inside the residence, one fire worker emerged from the home and immediately “leaned against a wall and threw up.”

Another, Avilla Boudringhin, headed straight for the awaiting police.

“Gentlemen, you’d better go and take a look in the basement. I think you’ll find plenty that interest you.”

Police entered Petiot’s home and found several burning stoves. There was no house fire present, just the constant usage of multiple stoves burning nonstop.

“By the dim light of the burning stove, police made out bits of bone and flesh scattered around a pile of twisted arms and legs.” - Doctor of Death, Daily News.

Decayed By The Dozen

A French police officer peeks through a telescopic lens (right) allowing him a complete view inside the 'triangular room'.

A French police officer peeks through a telescopic lens (right) allowing him a complete view inside the 'triangular room'.


Not only was there a shocking amount of body parts scattered around Petiot’s home, but police also found evidence of a torture chamber that Marcel had recently used.

Through a small hidden door was a ‘triangular room’. In this room, under the guise of hiding from Gestapo, Marcel would scurry his victims inside and lock the door. There was no doorknob on the inside of the room.

Safely watching through a peephole with a telescopic lens, Marcel, wearing a gas mask for protection, would suffocate his victims with deadly gas as he watched with glee.

Once dead, Marcel would attempt to dispose of the bodies, but this task became too overwhelming as most of the corpses were piled up in the home and into the courtyard.

The clothes were opened and “limbs, bones and skulls tumbled out.” 30 pairs of women’s shoes were found along with a pit of quicklime. On top, “fragments of more than a dozen decayed human bodies.”

Also found in the home were 48 suitcases, 1700 articles of clothing, jewelry, fur coats, shoes, eyeglasses, and etc.

Murdering for France

Marcel Petiot was one of the worst serial killers in France's history.

Marcel Petiot was one of the worst serial killers in France's history.


As the “gagging officers” picked through the bones and heaps of “twisted arms and legs”, a man with “piercing black eyes” calmly strolled up to the police line riding a green bicycle.

This man had a story to tell.

Claiming to be the brother of the owner of 21 Rue Le Sueur, the man, whom police later found out was actually Marcel Petiot, said that the bodies found in the homes were those of Germans and German sympathizers, Gestapo, and traitors of France.

My brother is “the head of a Resistance group struggling to liberate France from the black boot of the Gestapo.” Marcel continued, “My head and the heads of many of my friends are at stake.”

The officer in charge, Joseph Teyssier, allowed the man to ride away on his bicycle, thus letting go one of the most gruesome and prolific serial killers France has ever dealt with.

Luckily for Teyssier, Marcel Petiot would be caught soon after living under an assumed name.

Tumbling Heads

Marcel Petiot would dispose of his victims using stoves. The "leftover" pieces he would toss in the Siene River.

Marcel Petiot would dispose of his victims using stoves. The "leftover" pieces he would toss in the Siene River.


Down in the basement area is where police found most of the macabre dealings. There were many pits filled with quicklime and human decay.

“A fresh pit had been dug and heaped with bodies, the quicklime all made up and ready to be poured over it.”

Several dresser drawers upstairs contained the valuables of Petiot’s victims.

Gold rings were especially prevalent. Some still contained the severed fingers which Petiot would later need to forcibly remove.

Gold teeth, many with blood and gum fragments attached, were also found in the upstairs rooms.

The apartment was terribly cluttered. When one officer tripped over a sack left casually on the floor, “a whole human head came tumbling out of it” bouncing down the entrance hall.

“This was not mere murder”, author Ryan Green states in his book Doctor Satan, “it was a methodical processing of corpses.”

Bodies Parts Al-a-Carte

A small portion of Marcel Petiot's victims.

A small portion of Marcel Petiot's victims.


Police began suspecting that a serial killer was active in Paris, even during the turbulent years of 1940-1944, when corpses would wash up in the Seine.

Many of the bodies weren’t complete, but only the dismembered legs and arms. This created the almost impossible duty of the French Police in identifying the victims.

The majority were never identified.

Ryan Green, in his book Doctor Satan, says that, “among the pieces were nine decapitated heads of unknown origin, four thighs, and sundry other parts, too.”

Detectives search through 48 suitcases in hopes in finding the true identity of Petiot's victims. Many were never identified.

Detectives search through 48 suitcases in hopes in finding the true identity of Petiot's victims. Many were never identified.


False Hope

Petiot tried claiming that he was only murdering enemies of France, but his lies were eventually exposed.

Petiot tried claiming that he was only murdering enemies of France, but his lies were eventually exposed.


Yvan (Yva) Dreyfus was an extremely wealthy French Jew living in Paris during the German occupation.

Dreyfus had heard stories of how Petiot, under the alias of Dr. Eugene, had been successful in smuggling a large portion of Jews out of Paris.

Petiot claimed he had contacts from Paris to Argentina and, for the right price, could smuggle out any Jewish man, woman, or family from under the “Gestapo’s black boot.”

However, this was a horrific lie.

To add insult to injury, Petiot referred to his 'underground escape network' as Fly-Tox, which France, and especially the Gestapo, became hell-bent on uncovering.

The name Fly-Tox had already been used for decades as a insecticide killer for mosquitoes etc. The Fly-Tox brand was popular in the United States, and the company advertised extensively.

Simply put, Marcel Petiot's fake underground smuggling network was named after a pest insecticide.

Petiot named his fake underground network as a popular American bug killer.

Petiot named his fake underground network as a popular American bug killer. Fly-Tox advertisment (Dayton Daily News 13, July 1925)


Perhaps to Petiot, his Jewish victims were nothing more than pesky bugs to him.

In the end, Marcel Petiot received his due justice under France's guillotine. Police would never be able to identify most of his victims.

"Of all the body parts recovered, none comprised the full sum of parts required to make a whole person." - Ryan Green, Doctor Satan.

Doctor Satan by Ryan Green (Amazon Kindle Unlimited)

Doctor of Death (Daily News 02, Dec. 2001)

The demon doctor of Rue le Sueur (The Philadelphia Inquirer 28, April 1946)

Paris physician says victims were traitors, enemies to France (Global-Gazette 21, March 1946)

Murdering for France (The Independent 17, Nov. 1990)

Petiot now says he aided Spain (The Salt Lake Tribune 24, Mar. 1946)

Fly-Tox advertisment (Dayton Daily News 13, July 1925)

Story of wholesale murder called a Gestapo Hoax (The Pittsburgh Press 18, Oct. 1944)

29 comments on “French Serial Killer Marcel Petiot Arrested After Police Found "Heaps of Bodies" And "Twisted Arms And Legs" Piled Up Through His Manor”

  1. Hi All,
    Fellow masshole here coming at you from Savin Hill (Dot). Long time listener first time commenter, love you all so much and can’t get enough of your podcast. As someone who works from home you guys keep me sane. Thanks for making Tuesday’s my favorite day of the week

  2. I've never Heard of this Case, but I wonder if Nikki did ? Surprisingly did not have any french wine in the House, steel reserve will have to work as subitute.

  3. Omg throw back to the days there used to be clues!!!
    Man I miss those days you ladies came up with some great drinks..

    1. *came up* - That's right, the drinks have definitely gone down hill. Let's just hope the podcast is going in the opposite direction, lol.

  4. Hahhaha “I know this looks really bad BUT……” is what my dogs face says every time i find something they have ripped up! At least it hasn’t been body parts!

      1. No!
        My two older dogs are too short to reach the toilet paper rolls! BUT we had to purchase a special and very expensive garbage can to keep them out of it as strange as it sounds!

        However I just got an english bulldog puppy for Christmas.. she may be the next TPer lol

      2. Is the pitter patter of four feet a test run ? If it goes well,Is a two footed creature (child) in the future ? Appears your closing in on forty, time to get it done!

      3. Jon,
        You should cover the “ken and barbie killers” , pretty interesting! Just watched a documentary on them, would be great to hear your take!

        1. Erica they did cover Paul and Karla, the Ken and Barbie killers, it was one of their first cases. It was a very good episode, except for the Jen parts! Karla was hot!

          1. Did they?? I don’t remember that one!! Sorry!! 2020 was a blur! I listened to like 200 episodes at the end of 2020 so I will have to go back to re-listen to it

    1. I agree and I’ve said that over and over to myself because I have never heard or thought that before but it makes soooo much sense.

  5. Listening to jen trying to explain Jewish characteristics, while trying not to "get cancelled" considering her level of intoxication, was a treat. I am glad she didn't mention the Media or banking, while talking about them.

  6. I absolutely think we should use the gathered information. People were murdered for it, so to me, it's the best middle finger we could possibly give to the nazis: using Mengele's depraved experiments for *good* purposes.

  7. So with the snow covering the South, every swinging dick on the Congo is posting photos of their mutt dog and bastard child playing in the snow. Is it hypothetically wrong of me too desire to field goal kick said random dogs and children in their respective faces ? Asking for a friend.... Thanks

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