40 'Voodoo' Needles Found in Brazilian Toddler
Boy was used in black magic ritual: police
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 17, 2009 1:44 AM CST
A person points at a X-ray of a 2-year-old boy showing needles inside his body in a hospital in Ibotirama, northern Brazil.   (AP Photo/Agencia O Globo)

(Newser) – A Brazilian 2-year-old boy is in intensive care after his stepfather pushed up to 40 sewing needles in him as part of a black magic rite, authorities say. The man has confessed, telling investigators that his mistress ordered him to kill the boy to take revenge on his wife "through a macabre ritual," the BBC reports.

The toddler's condition is improving, and surgeons hope to be able to remove most of the needles from his neck, torso, and legs, although some are lodged inside vital organs. The boy's mother says she found items associated with black magic inside the home she shared with his stepfather and six other children. She rushed her son to the hospital when he complained of stomach pain and vomited. The case is being treated as an attempted homicide.