Chow Hok Kuen, 28, who is of Taiwanese origin, was arrested with the grisly haul in a hotel in the city’s Chinatown on Thursday, police said. The corpses had been stuffed into travel bags, apparently to be smuggled to Taiwan.
The corpses were bought from a Taiwanese national for 200,000 baht (€5,000) and could have been sold for six times that amount in Taiwan, police said.
The origin of the foetuses was unclear.
“He said he planned to sell the foetuses to clients who believe they will make them lucky and rich,” said Colonel Wiwat Kamchamnan of Bangkok police.
In Thai black magic rituals, also observed among some Chinese communities, preserved foetuses are believed to bring good fortune or reverse bad luck for the owner and are often kept in shrines within homes or businesses.
“The bodies are of children between the ages of two and seven months. Some were found covered in gold leaf,” Col Kumchumnan told Reuters.
It was not clear where the bodies came from.
Mr Kuen was staying at a hotel in Khao San Rd, Bangkok’s backpacker area, but the bodies were found in a separate hotel. Police had received a tip-off that infant corpses were being offered to wealthy clients through a website advertising black magic services.
Mr Kuen faces one year in prison and a 2,000 baht (€50) fine if found guilty.