Police were horrified to make a gruesome discovery in an ordinary terraced house in central Dorking yesterday at the home of mortician Tom Cadaver.
"We were alerted by a neighbour," said detective inspector Henry Hoover. "He took a parcel for Cadaver while Cadaver was out, only to discover it was formaldehyde. After he'd Googled the uses of this noxious chemical, he rang the police."
Police raided Cadaver's terraced house and did not need to search far to discover their gruesome discovery.
"Cadaver's living room had a cupboard running one full wall," said Hoover. "When we opened it we discovered hundreds of thumbs."
According to Hoover, several of his officers immediately contaminated the crime scene.
"Each thumb had its own jar," said Hoover. "Our forensic team are running fingerprint analysis on all of them to identify as many as we can."
Cadaver claims that he removed the thumbs from the bodies in the mortuary where he works to keep track of how many of the deceased he has worked on. However, Hoover has to ensure that none of the thumbs have come from other sources.
"If what he says is true," said Hoover, "we're not sure what we can charge him with."
Cadaver's morbid interest in the departed has been an obsession since he was young, leading to calls for stricter controls and background checks on those who wish to work with the dead. Cadaver has promised to cease his collection from unwilling volunteers, and has asked instead for volunteers.
If you wish to add some thumbs to his collection, please donate up to five using the thumbs below this news article.