Is This Man Eating A Foetus?

Or Is Zhu Yu Having You On?

David Emery of the Urban Legends Guide Says it's fake but the The most important point for the purposes of this SAFF webpage is not whether the photograph is real or false, but that it has no connection whatsoever with ritual or satanism. Zhu is dressed in normal clothes, is sat at a dining table in what appears to be an ordinary house with ordinary decorations and is a self-declared artist, not a Satanist.

The photograph may or may not be evidence of cannibalism, but it certainly is not evidence to confirm Valerie Sinason's Twenty year obsession with trying to prove the existence of Satanic Ritual Abuse, yet that is the claim which was originally made in the Independent.

David Emery says:

Avant-garde artists will say and do practically anything to shock their audiences, so we are obliged to acknowledge the possibility that Zhu Yu is telling the truth that he really did cook and eat human fetuses in front of a camera. On the other hand, "performance art" is often strictly that a performance and it has been argued that Zhu could have constructed his "fetuses" out of doll parts and animal carcasses, pretended to consume them in front of a camera, and issued tongue-in-cheek statements to the press claiming he ate human flesh.

That is a theory I'm inclined to agree with, frankly, because if Zhu's claims were factual he'd probably be serving jail time right now. There is no reason to suppose the government of China is any more tolerant of cannibalism than governments anywhere else, and the fact that Zhu's work was rejected from an official exhibition bears that out. By his own "admission," the fetuses Zhu allegedly cooked and ate were obtained illegally, thus if he is telling the truth he could be prosecuted as an accomplice in that crime, as well.

Officials demand retraction In early 2001, a Malaysian tabloid published several of the photos in conjunction with a story alleging that the signature dish of a particular Taiwanese restaurant contains the "meat" of human infants. Taiwan government officials immediately demanded a retraction a de facto confirmation that baby eating is not particularly well-accepted by the Chinese.

Shortly afterward, the same pictures turned up on a prominent Website specializing in tasteless content (, prompting reports in the British press that Scotland Yard and the FBI were investigating their origins. The owner of said Website maintains he has never been contacted by authorities from any country, however. When last I looked (August 2001), the photos were still on display there.

2009, a part of The New York Times Company.

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On 21st February 2001 Jeremy Laurance, the Indy's Health Editor became the latest victim of the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth.   Like most of this country's 'scribblers' he displayed the universal lack of discernment which has suckered in so many before him to this epic and apocryphal lie.   This is what he told hundreds of thousands of his readers:

(1) British detectives said they were trying to close a website showing pictures of a man eating a dismembered baby.

(2) Scotland Yard is liaising with the FBI in the US to close the website based in California, which has been linked with the ritual abuse of children.

(3) The existence of the websites was revealed by two patients at the Clinic for Dissociative Studies based in London's Harley Street and run by Valerie Sinason, a psychotherapist who specialises in the treatment of adult survivors of child abuse.

(4) Dr Sinason claims that some children are abused in Satanic rituals involving ceremonies and animal or human sacrifice. She submitted a report on her claims, based on the treatment of 51 patients, to the health department last July, which funded her research.

(5) The Metropolitan Police have provided an officer  Mr Driscoll to work with Dr Sinason's clinic for half a day a month to investigate claims of abuse made by patients  Mr Driscoll, said: "The pictures are awful. It is your worst nightmare unfolding in front of you. I took them to a very senior forensic pathologist - a man I have a lot of faith in - and he looked me in the eye and said: These are the pictures I hoped I would never see.' For me it's a murder scene because I don't know how that child died. That is why I have got massive concern about it and I think something should be done about it."

(6) Dr Sinason said: "I heard accounts of the websites from two different survivors of abuse who didn't know each other. It is a further sign that if you want to do anything bizarre you will get away with it because no one will believe it or speak about it."

But Within A Week The Gaffe Was Up And A Severely Embarrassed Jeremy was Eating His Words

March 1, 2001, Thursday


By Jeremy Laurance

'LET'S NOT beat about the bush. I've been had. A reporter in search of  a story has, not for the first time, fallen foul of an excess of enthusiasm, credulousness, and someone's idea of a good joke.

Last week, a story by me appeared in The Independent, saying that police were trying to close down an internet site that carried pictures of a man eating a dismembered baby. There was a suggestion, which I reported, that this gave credence to claims of ritual or Satanic abuse, including human sacrifice, which have been the subject of fierce controversy for more than a decade.

It turns out, as several readers have brought to our attention with notable glee, that the pictures on the Californian website show, not human sacrifice, but a Chinese performance artist who has been shocking audiences in the Far East with his images of cannibalism. Distasteful as his pictures will seem to most people, they are not evidence of Satanic abuse.  So here I am eating humble pie. I apologies for misleading readers about the proper context of the pictures (which was unknown to me).

I was contacted a fortnight ago by Valerie Sinason, a child psychotherapist who has, almost single-handedly, kept alive the notion that some children in Britain have been the victims of ritual or Satanic abuse for more than a decade. She has, she says, 51 adult patients who are survivors of child abuse and who, during therapy, have disclosed details suggesting that the abuse had ritual elements.

I was well aware of Ms Sinason's controversial background and have myself been a skeptic about Satanic abuse since the first allegations were made in the late 1980s. I visited Rochdale in 1990, one of the alleged centres of the practice along with Nottingham and Orkney, and concluded in a piece I wrote for the Sunday Correspondent that the most likely explanation for the strange goings-on could be found on the horror shelves of the local video store.

However, I decided to take Ms Sinason's evidence at face value and check it. I accessed the website and there, sure enough, was a man apparently eating a dead baby. I spoke to the police officer she put me in touch with - Detective Inspector Clive Driscoll - and he gave me some bloodcurdling quotes about murder and human sacrifice and said a senior forensic pathologist who had examined the pictures considered the dismembered baby to be real.

'During May 2009 DCI Clive Driscoll of the Metropolitan Police contacted us to provide additional information and stated:

" The article within the independent is not accurate. I most certainly was attached for 18 months to Ms Sinneson (sic) clinic as an advisor. This was part of the MPS strategy to make sure we listened to victims at all levels. The male featured eating the young child is a behavioural (sic) artist from China, he admitted the child was real and the reason he had posed as eating parts of the child was for artistic purpose. I must confess this art is lost on me. The advice I gave to the journalist was until I know how the child died It was a Crime Scene. The journalist later apologised to me. I accepted that apology. " '

There were, admittedly, no candles or crucifixes, and the man was obviously posing, but, on the face of it, cannibalism had been caught on camera.

Once again, however, allegations of ritual abuse have turned out to rest on very little. A year ago, Valerie Sinason appeared on Radio 4's Today programme claiming she had "clinical evidence" of babies who had not been registered at birth being involved in ritual abuse. The implication was that the babies had been conceived and raised secretly for use in rituals that sometimes ended in their sacrifice.

Most experts poured scorn on these claims and pointed out they could do serious harm by their very outlandishness - by making the whole of child abuse seem less likely and easier to dismiss. But they gained a measure of credence because Ms Sinason had been commissioned by the Department of Health, together with a colleague Dr Robert Hale, to write a report detailing her findings, which was submitted to the department last July.

I contacted the health department to ask what had happened to Ms Sinason's report and ask for a comment. What I received, by e-mail, was one of the longest and most carefully worded statements I can remember receiving.

The health department said, in summary, that they had received the report by Dr Hale and Ms Sinason, submitted it to peer review and returned it to the authors with reviewers' comments. They had no plans to publish it. They also cited separate research that they had commissioned from Professor Joan La Fontaine of the London School of Economics, who found "no independent material evidence" to support allegations of "Satanic child abuse and devil worship".

The coup de grace came in the final paragraph:

"In the Government's view, the conclusion of the study they commissioned by Professor La Fontaine ... has not been rendered invalid by Dr Hale and Valerie Sinason's study."

In other words, the claims about Satanic abuse are a load of tosh. To my knowledge, this is the first official declaration by a government department to this effect.

Professor La Fontaine said:

"It is not surprising to me that patients who are having treatment by Valerie Sinason would produce stories that echo such topical issues as the recent trial for receiving internet pornography and the publicity for the film Hannibal. There is good research that shows the "memories" of abuse are produced in and by the therapy."

It would be helpful now to everyone, especially those charged with the protection of children, if the debate about whether or not ritual abuse exists were drawn to a close. Allegations of Satanism should be directed where they belong - at the horror films and videos that almost certainly triggered the scare a decade ago, and have fostered it ever since.'

What a pity Laurance did not employ this astute rational discernment BEFORE he penned another load of clap-trap about Satanic Ritual Abuse.

Amazing how contrite these people are when they have egg on their faces.   For Jeremy's information it was time to draw the SRAM to a close TEN YEARS AGO before gutter press journalists breathed life into it for the fundies and the therapist industry. Now, when he is looking foolish and he has found out what it is like to be on the receiving end of the myth he calls for it to end.  What about the 86 children and families who have had their lives destroyed by it?  What did hacks do when they called for it to halt when they were unjustly roped into it by the very same  clique of satan hunters?    The hacks kept on pumping the lie for all it was worth - that's what they did.  The Indy is still doing it today TEN YEARS later.  Ten Years of sensationalism and false promises and it only needs an obsessed campaigner with a picture from the internet to regurgitate the very same lies yet again

  • As  though nothing had happened;
  • As though the suffering of all those innocent people was as of nothing;
  • As though a public inquiry which found it was all lies was worthless;
  • As though numerous failed prosecutions, an official government report saying the claims were clap-trap and the waste of 25 million pounds worth of taxpayers money was an irrelevancy!

We will not allow Jeremy Laurance and the Editor of the Independent
to escape the ramifications of their actions 
when Sophie Goodchild, their Home Affairs Correspondent suckered
 in to the much vaunted (but now defunct) Department of Health Sinason 
Devil Report. 


Trumpeted the Indy headline on April 30th , as  dear Sophie acted as the mouthpiece of yet another sample of intolerance from the supposedly liberal Indy.  

In a letter to the editor we castigated the Indy for giving succor to troublemakers. We informed her of the true background to the  DoH Devil Report, directing her and Goodchild to read the SAFF website.  

Did they take any notice?   Of course not!  

Did they reply?  Of course not?  

Did they print our letter?   Of course not!  

 They buried our warning and sure enough, within the year The Independent newspaper fell  head first into the biggest pile of wombat's doo since its new editor took over.

Click here to read Goodchild's anti-occult propaganda

Click here to read our warnings to the Editor of the Indy

Here's some more reasons why the Indy is an apology for a newspaper.

(1) The antidote to the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth is already on the web.  There are enough websites run by people like us to portray the true background. Laurance was lazy - he didn't do his research fully enough - even when the subject was the net itself.  

(2) Had he surfed the SAFF website he would have been suspicious of the tosh about the perennial DoH funded report, and checked further before printing the black-propaganda he did.  Had he been doing his job properly,  portraying both sides of the issue, he could have contacted any of those occult groups and organisations who have been  falsely accused; they would have told him the truth.  

Do you want to read about the key Christian fundamentalist agitator who , in an exclusive scoop, first proclaimed that the DoH had funded Sinason's report in his evangelical newsletter under the heading SATANIC ABUSE - IT'S A REALITY! even before Sinason's study had actually taken place!  Then click here.

Do you want to read how this same fundamentalist agitator tried to pass off a piece of performance art as satanic abuse in a Channel 4 Documentary on the Satanic Ritual Abuse Myth?  Then Click here:

(Are you listening Jeremy Laurance? )

(3) Why did Laurance and Goodchild not check the Indy's own files?   Ironically the SAFF was one of the main suppliers of information to the Indy during the 1990 scare when the newspaper won an award for their balanced coverage of the SRAM.     Why did he not speak to the SAFF before writing this piece?   Most hacks don't think our opinion matters!  Their prejudice can be so blatant and subconscious that many have arrogantly assumed all Occultists are evil, ignorant, unsophisticated dolts and that their opinions do not matter.   That is why gullible newspapers like the Indy get no sympathy from us when they reap the end result of their actions. Because we have continually updated the newspapers of this country, including the Independent, with the truth about this issue for over a decade - and virtually all of them , to their ultimate discredit, have adopted the policy of  actively ignoring us. Their prejudice appears to be such that they treat us as the enemy  right from the off, then, when we turn out to be right - as we always do - most of them resent us even more!   


Laurence claims  not to be a complete sucker about SRAM because he did research on it in the early 1990s.  He says he was lead to believe in this latest hoax because a forensic expert said that it was real.  If  Laurance HAD been well informed he would have known that the use of  opinions from forensic experts who got it all wrong were a feature which helped cause the 1990 outbreak and too readily relying on ONE opinion was the cause of it.  Does no-one remember the retired police surgeon who 'uncovered' 8 'definite' cases of Satanic Murder which evaporated into thin air when the police investigated them?   

Cannibalism was a KEY feature of the very first Satanic Abuse Myth scare in 1988.   You think a hack would remember classic headlines like


And did he not remember that one of Valerie Sinason's key fundamentalist contacts had already tried to pass of a piece of performance art as satanic abuse on Channel 4 TV in 1994?   Obviously Jeremy is not as clued up as he likes to think he is.

He is misleading his readers when he suggests that Sinason is 'single-handedly' keeping alive the satanic abuse myth.  This does for the SRA Myth what the Warren commission did for the Kennedy Assassination - the misdirection of the 'lone assassin'.    Contrary to Jeremy's assertions there are THOUSANDS of fundamentalist satan hunters and therapists out there  using this disgusting Myth to breach the human rights of people who have non-christian religions.   The Myth is still causing extensive trouble in our judicial system, witness the recent failed satanic ritual abuse case in Plymouth this week which was abandoned half way through because the key evidence to substantiate the allegations had been sourced from Recovered Memories. We remind the Indy that  Recovered Memories was a lynch-pin of the first wave of Satanic Ritual Abuse hysteria which resulted in the Orkney and Rochdale cases.  Valerie Sinason is herself a believer in Recovered Memory therapy.


 Like so many in the media Laurance thinks that he cannot be taken in by prejudiced sectarian information.  That is why he attributed, WRONGLY, the outbreak of Satanic Hysteria in Rochdale to a video-nasty.  The real cause was the subversive actions of fundamentalist Christians infiltrating the gullible underbelly of social work via the fringe therapy movement.   That is such an unpalatable statement to other, ordinary Christians, that the great British Media dare not tell the truth about it. Laurance obviously still doesn't accept that fact, even though that's what the Rochdale inquiry concluded; that's what the Government enquiry concluded and that's what numerous judges have concluded when dismissing these bogus cases.


Yes Folks, Laurance, Goodchild and the editor of the Indy are going into our Hall of Shame until  this rag picks itself up from the gutter and comes up with something more than a pathetic,   I'm - sorry - but - anyone - could - have - been- had - I'm - not - thick - really - let's - forget - about - it - all - shall - we attitude.    

After all, if people who knew what they were talking about had not informed him that he had been hoaxed Jeremy would presumably still consider his article valid.  It is not Jeremy who has wised up, but people who have been fighting this issue for years who have alerted him to the damage he could have done.  

Give Jerry his due though, - there are dozens of hacks out there who have been suckered into reporting the existence of SRA and few have had the honour to admit it  in print -  they just won't touch the scare again with a bargepole.  The point is WHAT IS THE INDEPENDENT NOW GOING TO DO ABOUT IT?   Is it going to squirm back into its shell and pretend it never happened, or will  it do something to stop it happening again?  As it surely will if not stopped.

 When journalist Rosie Waterhouse was 'stung' by the Myth she got up off her backside and won an award for blasting it apart.   Valerie  and many others are still beavering away with their obsessions about baby-eating satanists; relying on publicity from prejudiced journalists to keep the ball rolling.  There's always some new-kid-on-the-block who can't see it coming.  Life and death matters like this ; which suppress religious and human rights are NOT a joke and, as the Indy now knows from bitter personal experience they will not go away  until journalists like them;  who have consistently breathed life into the myth, work a bit harder to scotch it.  


POSTSCRIPT:   You can find the TRUE background about the Sinason Devil Report elsewhere on this site . Also posted here are full details of  our campaign to discredit the DoH for paying Satan Hunters to perpetuate the idea of Satanic Ritual Abuse.    If the government did not patronise these people these wild goose chases would not happen. We at the SAFF have been doing a lot to subdue the harmful nature of the Satanic Ritual Abuse myth for the benefit of society at large.   We, the occultists  who are being blamed for these imagined atrocities,  have the best track record in this country of responsibly working to halt  this intolerance and stop the harm.   We are doing it voluntarily and have for 10 years been absolutely right on the button.    Those people like Jeremy who make a living out of journalism have , therefore, a double responsibility to get it right - even if only to keep up with the 'amateurs'.

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