A 35-year-old man in Australia has been set free after he served two years in prison for discarding his girlfriend's dead body in a dumpster. He lived with her decomposing corpse for three weeks before disposing of it.

Jason Cooper pleaded guilty to interfering with a corpse and fraud relating to the death of his partner, Shae Francis, in October 2018. The duo was living together when she died suddenly, reported Brisbane Times. Her body was not found.

Cooper was taken into custody in June 2019. Since he already served 896 days in prison, he was let off free Friday despite being sentenced for his crimes.

A court in Australia heard that Cooper and Francis were addicted to alcohol. The man said he woke up one morning and found Francis dead. Her body remained in their apartment for "about three weeks" before he disposed of it.

Cooper told police that he initially wrapped the body in a sleeping bag and planned to bury it on a beach as per Francis' wish, but he panicked when he saw a police car. He then disposed of her body in a dumpster. Though he returned to the dumpster to collect her body a few hours later, it was gone.

Cooper's neighbors called police and reported a "bad smell" emanating from his room, but officers found nothing in the apartment.

He repeatedly lied to Francis' family, insisting that the woman was alive. He continued to use her bank card, racking up more than $6,409 worth of transactions before he was arrested in 2019. Following his confession, authorities searched a Queensland landfill site in March 2020, but Francis' body was not found.

The suspect was initially charged with manslaughter, but the charges were dropped. The prosecution decided to proceed with the two charges, interfering with a corpse and fraud, after he pleaded guilty.

The court heard that Cooper had been diagnosed with schizophrenia and was put on anti-psychotic medication. Francis also had a history of alcohol dependence that resulted in her death.

While sentencing him, the judge said Cooper's alcohol disorder should be taken into account, considering he was not acting in the way a rational person would. "It is not normal to have a dead person in your room for three weeks. The whole scenario is, quite frankly, disturbingly bizarre," he said.

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