Confronted by seven officers, "He tried at first giving fake names, but in the end he just said 'You got me,' " said police spokesman Guido Busch. "He didn't resist."
Magnotta, 29, is wanted by Canadian authorities on suspicion of killing Jun Lin, a 33-year-old man he dated, and mailing his body parts to Canada's two top political parties. They say Magnotta filmed the killing of the student from Wuhan, China, and posted it online. The video shows a man with an ice pick stabbing a naked, bound male. He also dismembers the corpse and performs sexual acts with it in what police called a horrifying video.
The warning signs apparently were already there. For nearly two years animal activists had been looking for a man who tortured and killed cats and posted videos of his cruelty online. Since Jun Lin's killing, Montreal police have released a photo from the video, which they say is of Magnotta.
Magnotta is believed to have fled to France on May 26, based on evidence police found at his apartment and a blog he once posted about disappearing.
Berlin police spokeswoman Kerstin Ziesmer said Magnotta was being questioned and would be brought before a judge behind closed doors.
"He says he is the wanted person," she added, while cautioning that his identity must still be independently confirmed by German authorities. Canada, like Europe, has no death penalty, making extradition more likely.
As they unraveled his background, police discovered that Magnotta changed his name from Eric Clinton Newman in 2006 and that he was born in Scarborough, Ontario.
His mother, Anna Yourkin in Peterbourgh, Ontario, apologized, said she had no comment, and hung up the phone.