Sunk Submarine Mystery: Danish Inventor Tells Court He Didn't Kill Female Journalist
Danish inventor Peter Madsen, charged in court Saturday with the death of Swedish journalist Kim Wall, who disappeared on Thursday after boarding his private submarine, has denied any guilt. He previously said he dropped her off on one of Copenhagen's harbor islands.
Media frenzy surrounding the case forced the hearing to be moved to a larger courtroom in Copenhagen.
“I would like to have my say,” Madsen, 46, told reporters and the public after the prosecutor said he faced “preliminary charges [of manslaughter] for having killed in an unknown way and in an unknown place Kim Isabell Frerika Wall of Sweden.”
The judge insisted, however, that initial statements should be given behind closed doors. After the hearing, Madsen, who has been a suspect since Friday, was placed in detention for 24 days.
Friends, relatives and colleagues of Wall, who had been educated at Columbia University, Sorbonne and the London School of Economics, and worked as a freelance journalist, have bombarded social media with requests for information about her. Her family has also released a statement saying they still hoped that she would be found “safe and well.” Wall has not been reachable by phone since shortly after boarding Madsen’s UC3 Nautilus submarine as part of an assignment for “Wired” magazine on Thursday evening.
On Saturday, the rescue vessel Vina recovered the UC3 Nautilus submarine, which is being treated as a possible crime scene, from the bottom of the sea near the island of Dragoer south of Copenhagen. The 18-meter-long, 40-ton vessel, built in 2008 with help from crowdfunding, was at the time the biggest private submarine in the world, and made its designer and captain a national celebrity.
The disappearance of Wall, whose articles have been published by the New York Times, the Guardian and other high-profile publications, was first reported by her boyfriend, who called the police after she failed to return on Thursday night.