Thomas Harris, the author who created the widely popular and feared character “Hannibal Lector” AKA “Hannibal the Cannibal”, has finally revealed the inspiration for the fictitious villain: Mexican physician Alfredo Balli Trevino. Harris stumbled upon Trevino quite by accident while he was visiting the Nuevo Leon State Prison in Monterey, Mexico sometime around 1963. It was Harris’ intention to interview a death row inmate Dykes Askew Simmons who was awaiting his execution for the deaths of three people. While at the prison, Harris learned that Simmons had been shot the year before in a botched prison escape. His life was saved by the medical expertise of Trevino. As Harris interviewed Trevino, he was impressed by the grace of this thirty-something year old doctor whom he later learned was serving a twenty year sentence for the murder and dismemberment of his gay lover Jesús Castillo Rangel. Apparently, Trevino used a scalpel to cut his lover into small pieces which he then buried in the hopes of hiding the death. Rangel’s uncle ultimately discovered the body and reported Trevino to the police. For his part, Trevino ever remained remorseful for the evil he committed. He passed away in 2009 at age of 89.
Revealed: The Mexican doctor who chopped up his gay lover and was the inspiration for fictional cannibal Hannibal Lecter