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Horrifically, 200 to 300 graves at the Burr Oak Cemetery in Alsip, Illinois were dug up in an illegal scheme to make more money. According to the Cook County Sheriff, four employees of Perpetua Holdings of Illinois Inc. were arrested after they allegedly dug up graves and moved bodies to a mass dumping site to make room for new grave sites. The perpetrators also apparently removed headstones and buried coffins on top of existing burial sites. All of these actions were part of an elaborate scheme to cash in on the re-sale of burial sites that were already being used.

At least six Chicago law firms are representing the relatives of the deceased. Some of the firms are attempting to obtain a restraining order to allow the families into the graveyard, which was cordoned off as a crime scene by local authorities. Aside from the temporary restraining orders, the lawsuits seek compensatory damages and potentially punitive damages. Furthermore, Capital Group of Richardson, Texas may also be named as an owner of the graveyard.

The cemetery holds the bodies of many prominent Americans such as the slain civil rights figure Emmett Till and blues and jazz singer Dinah Washington. Michelle Obama’s father was allegedly buried in the graveyard as well, but the White House has since debunked that rumor.

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