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Macabre find in Lake Zurich

Police divers on Wednesday brought to the surface 22 urns containing human ashes, found on the bed of Lake Zurich off the village of Küsnacht.

The Zurich cantonal building department said that the unmarked urns had been taken to a place which they could be kept in dignified surroundings.

An initial 13 urns were removed on Sunday by divers of the Küsnacht Lake Rescue Service who discovered them by chance.

The department had originally wanted to leave the rest where they were until it had been decided what should happen to them. However, officials had a change of heart after reports of the find appeared in the press, prompting fears that amateur divers might be attracted to the spot.

It is not clear how the urns came to be there. A permit is needed to deposit ashes in the lake, and no such permit had been granted, the building department spokesman told the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper.

The Zurich cantonal department for waste, water, energy and air has filed a legal complaint against persons unknown for disturbing the peace of the dead.

The divers who found them and brought some up to the surface have been criticised for not leaving them where they were and informing the police, but they do not face charges.

swissinfo.ch and agencies

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