Conspiracy Theory Surrounds Paul the Octopus Death

Sports | October 27, 2010, Wednesday // 15:35
Bulgaria: Conspiracy Theory Surrounds Paul the Octopus Death The beloved and internationally known Paul the Octopus died in the night of October 25. Photo by EPA/BGNES

The death of the internationally known Paul the Octopus has been surrounded by a conspiracy theory that he had died earlier than announced, The Guardian reports.

On Tuesday, the Sea Life aquarium in Oberhausen, Germany announced that Paul, who became a World Cup phenomenon after predicting correctly all Germany's matches and the World Cup final, died.

However, according to the journalist Jiang Xiao, the octopus had been dead for the last three months. In her forthcoming thriller, entitled "Who Killed Paul the Octopus?", she states she was "60 to 70% sure" that Pauldied in July and was replaced secretly by the aquarium staff.

"[Octopuses] all look the same. It is impossible to tell the difference," she said.

Jiang said she found it "kind of strange" that the news for Paul's death came shortly after the aquarium staff had contacted her team to say they wanted to cooperate on the international distribution of her film.

"We have been keeping in touch with the German aquarium ever since the beginning [of production] but it seemed to me that they were afraid. The movie is about unveiling the inside story behind the octopus miracle, so they felt nervous," she said.

According to Jiang's theory, Paul died on July 9, two days before the World Cup final and twas replaced in order to fool people.

The aquarium has officially rejected her accusations.

"It is certainly not true that Paul died in the summer. We can absolutely assure you that he died last night. He was about two and a half, which is the average age for an octopus. He died a simple and straightforward death," the spokeswoman for Sea Life said.

She added that Paul will be cremated in the next few days. His ashes will be placed in an urn and displayed in a shrine, along with a portrait and video clips from his life, The Guardian reports.

"We've already set up a condolence book where people can write their tributes to Paul," the spokeswoman said.

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Tags: Paul the Octopus, Paul, world cup, death, Germany
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