msnbc.com staff and news service reports
updated 5/5/2006 3:48:36 PM ET 2006-05-05T19:48:36

Reuters issued the following advisory May 9 in regard to this story: The Budapest story headlined "Hungary workers get shock at bottom of rum barrel" issued on May 4 is withdrawn. Police said the incident, reported on a police magazine Web site, happened 10 years ago. Reuters has been unable to make any further checks to substantiate the story. There will be no substitute story.

Hungarian builders who drank their way to the bottom of a huge barrel of rum while renovating a house got a nasty surprise when a pickled corpse tumbled out of the empty barrel, a police magazine Web site reported.

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According to online magazine www.zsaru.hu, workers in Szeged in the south of Hungary tried to move the barrel after they had drained it, only to find it was surprisingly heavy and were shocked when the body of a naked man fell out.

The Web site said that the body of the man had been shipped back from Jamaica 20 years ago by his wife in the barrel of rum in order to avoid the cost and paperwork of an official return.

According to the Web site, workers said the rum in the 300-liter barrel had a “special taste” so they even decanted a few bottles of the liquor to take home.

The wife has since died and the man was buried in a proper grave.

The Reuters news service was attempting to verify the truth of the tale. Similar urban legends have circulated for many, many years.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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