Court: Man temporarily allowed to keep dead wife buried in guarden

On Tuesday the court in Maastricht gave a 57-year-old man permission to temporarily leave his deceased wife buried in his own garden in Brunssum. The body can remain buried in the garden at least until the Brunssum city council made a decision on the widower's request for his wife to be legally buried in the garden, ANP reports. 

The case was brought by widower Frenk Windels. After 34 years of marriage, he suddenly had to say goodbye to his wife, who died unexpectedly of a heart attack at the age of 59 on July 24th. He decided to bury her in his own garden.

"A crime of passion. It was my wife's last wish", he said, sobbing, in court. He acknowledged that he was wrong to bury her in the garden without permission.

Windels brought the case to court when the municipality demanded that his wife's body be exhumed and moved to a graveyard. But the judge ruled against this, at least until the city council made a decision on whether or not to allow for the wife to be buried there. Otherwise there is a possibility that the body will have to be moved twice - once now to the graveyard at the municipality's demand and twice back to the garden if the city council decides it is allowed.

According to the court, this is contrary to the law on funeral service and grave rest. "Very, very undesirable", the judge said. He emphasized to Windels that this does not mean he won, it all now depends on the council's decision. When this decision will be made is unclear.