Police operation (symbol image)
Photo: Karl-Josef Hildenbrand / DPA
A 41-year-old from Hürth near Cologne is said to have poisoned several women from his environment with heavy metal - two of them are dead.
The man was arrested on Tuesday, said prosecutors and police.
When he searched his apartment, detectives had seized the highly toxic heavy metal thallium.
An arrest warrant had been issued on the basis of the urgent suspicion of double murder, attempted murder and attempted abortion.
According to the information, the investigation started on November 27 after a complaint from the mother of his pregnant partner.
The 36-year-old is in hospital with thallium poisoning and is in mortal danger.
Whether the fetus will survive is uncertain, according to the investigators.
Two women probably died of thallium poisoning
In addition, there is now a suspicion that the death of the 92-year-old grandmother of the 36-year-olds in April 2020 could be due to thallium poisoning, said the prosecutor.
The body was exhumed and autopsied.
In addition, in the course of the investigation it was also found that the man's former wife probably died of thallium poisoning in May 2020.
According to the investigators, the 41-year-old denies the acts.
The presumption of innocence applies to him.
"The extensive investigations into the offenses and the background of the offense are ongoing," the authorities said.
ptz / dpa