German police hired an Iranian "metaphysicist" in its desperate attempt to track down a neo-Nazi cell suspected in a string of murders targeting minorities in Germany over the course of a decade, Spiegel Online reported last week.

The new materials revealed to a committee of the Bundestag (Germany's lower house of parliament) describe in detail the unusual investigative method used by German police as its hunt for the National Socialist Underground, a group of right-wing extremists tied to the murders, proved fruitless.

A "metaphysicist" employed by the German police in 2008 used a "medium" to channel the spirit of one of the victims, but failed to provide any real information about the cell.

In the end, the group was exposed by chance – when two of the members committed suicide and the third burnt down their mobile home. By that time, the cell had killed nine Turkish immigrants and an officer of Greek origin.

According to the Spiegel report, an Iranian management consultant approached two officials in the Hamburg police in 2008 and suggested that they use the services of someone she described as a "giant among metaphysicists" to solve the case. In exchange, she wanted them to secure a visa for her "metaphysicist" friend.

Senior police officials gave the two investigators go-ahead for the mission, but made clear that were not to give any financial compensation to the "metaphycist" unless clear results were reached.

The séance was held in April 2008. The Iranian shared with the German police the results of the 15-minute metaphysical "questioning" with one of them victims via a female medium in an apartment in the city, and said that the murder may been linked to a drug deal involving a biker gang. In hindsight, it's become clear that the results of the "questioning" were irrelevant to the murder under investigation.

The use of the "metaphysicist" not only failed to provide results, but has also angered parliamentarians.

"The trail of right-wing extremism was not pursued in Hamburg, where they used information from necromancers, instead," Sebastian Edathy, chairman of the committee investigating the NSU, was quoted by Spiegel as saying. "Unbelievable!"