But, there must be one of these connections that writes life or, as in the present cases, death.
Parallels can be found with the cases of the Isdal woman and the dead, eight years later (1995), at the Plaza Hotel in Oslo.
It was not unusual that a body was found on September 22, 1987, along the railway line near Oslo, between Kambo and Moss. According to forensic examinations, the dead man had been run over by a train.
The clothing of the dead man was presumably from Germany. First, there were the obligatory thrombosis stockings, two socks for medical support with three blue stripes on top and an open toe at the toes.
Hertie, KaDeWe, fine-rib undershirt (Elan Body), the typical Schimanski jacket of the days 1987, when the Duisburg bully investigator was the rating king of the ARD.
At first, it seemed mysterious why the labels had also been cut out of his clothes. It was like the two deaths mentioned above. A packet of cigarettes from the former Eastern Bloc, an almost empty box of Camel, which was produced in the West for the East, was found with the body, as well as a Swiss army knife, a red Victorinox Swiss Army pocket knife of the model "Climber".
In this context, the cigarettes could have come from the stocks of the former GDR Intershop. Mephisto shoes from the traditional company from Sarrebourg in France, which pointed to quality and a genuine connection to the Federal Republic. On the label of the Elan undershirt, there was a "German" written 1. an trace of the Second-Hand shops was gradually discarded because all the clothes came from the former Federal Republic of Germany.
In the course of the investigations, espionage again played a role with the finger of suspicion to the former Eastern Bloc. Along the railway line, there was a tunnel that led to a NATO facility on Gylder Hill in Våler in the 1980s. A radar station located there was part of the so-called Nike system. It was a missile defence system that was supposed to protect Oslo from a missile attack from the former Soviet Union.
But also a ship of a shipping company from Rendsburg came into the focus of the investigations. Bizarre became the case when the captain couldn't remember the passenger who allegedly had sailed on his cargo ship. At that time, it was common for passengers to be transported on cargo ships.
The case was filed away in Norway in 1990 because no papers were found on the dead man. Once again, however, the mysterious murder, initially classified as suicide, leads to the GDR after a trail to Switzerland, where a mix-up occurred, and the so-called "truck trail" was eliminated. A witness, truck driver Roy Sandberg, had reported after years that the tarp of his truck was cut when the events took place.
< healthy>Who knows this man, who is about 50-60 years old, or can provide relevant information about the case described? Relevant information also, especially from the environment of the former Kunst und Antiquitäten GmbH, which was subordinated to the KoKo. This also includes freight forwarders and drivers of the former VEB Deutrans, who may have taken the contraband goods to Scandinavia. Has an employee from this environment disappeared during the period in question? Also in connection with Jauerfood, a cover company of GENEX and GDR foreign trade in Copenhagen?
Did the dead man come from Berlin?
After the publication of the first article about one of the most mysterious murder cases in post-war history, we received numerous letters. Many thanks for all advises and comments.
Please read the first part.
Who was the beautiful stranger?
Of course, the question is allowed, why nobody misses the Isdal woman. This circumstance is extraordinary.
Were there people, one reader asked, who did not officially exist, but who rushed like a shadow army through the Cold War of Europe?
That well, maybe. In our research, we have found no evidence to deny or affirm this fact.
Of course, the trail also points to the former Yugoslavia. To the machinations of the days of Tito. This would be following what witnesses said, that the Isdal woman had met with two men of southern appearance. It must have been just before she died.
Yes, and Norway has done everything it can to cover its tracks and, as a deterrent to more Soviet spies, has invented one story after another to avoid the real reason. From the point of view at the time, this was quite understandable. This includes the history of the two check fraudsters who were arrested in 1972 using false identities in their crimes. The public never believed this story, which sounded like a legend of a former police officer who retired in 1976.
Nobody could or would believe in the suicide of the Isdal woman. According to the autopsy report, the Isdal woman was standing when the fire broke out. However, she could not stand any longer according to human judgement, because she had taken a lethal dose of Fenemal and alcohol, voluntarily or involuntarily, this could not be reconstructed. She choked to death on her combustion—carbon monoxide poisoning. Later, during the autopsy, a haematoma was found in the neck area, which could have been caused by a punch or a fall against a tree.
The probable time of death was Monday, 23 November 1970, at about 10 o'clock.
Surely the Isdal woman was not alone in her last hours. In the Hotel Hordaheimen in Bergen, where she was last seen alive, there was a meeting with an unknown man to whom she said she wanted to come straight away.
Since the death of the Isdal woman almost half a century ago, the world has changed—even the faces of the countries. The Isdal woman was a product of her time; that fact is often forgotten.
Her death cannot be atoned for, even if the perpetrator were to turn himself in. The murder is time-barred in Norway after 25 years, in 1995.
Based on a list of the objects that were recovered from the unidentified woman's suitcases and the site in Isdal, Norway, many facts can be reconstructed. Conclusions can also be drawn today from their almost hectic travel activities. At first, the trail of the Isdal woman leads across Europe, then to the German-French border between Pirmasens and Baden-Baden.
This was the result of the enamel analysis in 2016. There, in the vicinity, she must have stayed and also the train tickets found later in the suitcases at least point the way to Basel.
Twice it used the Hamburg - Basel railway line.
The discovery of the map of southern Scandinavia by the Reise- und Verkehrsverlag, Stuttgart, from 1970 speaks for this, according to the evidence list of the Norwegian police. Her handwriting was French; perhaps she was from Belgium or Luxembourg.
The intersection, however, can only be located in the Baden-Baden area.
This circumstance can be assumed if the tickets found in the suitcases of the NSB locker system in Bergen are not forged. Or were preliminary placed there later? There is a testimony from a witness, who is not mentioned in the documents, who claims to have seen several people with the suitcases before they were found by the Norwegian Criminal Police, two days after the Isdal woman was found.
In this connection, nine "passport identities" were found. It is not clear from the investigations at the time whether these passports were forged or were duplicates. So, issued by the state whether the passport forms had been stolen somewhere.
What she was doing in Isdal could, of course, be explained with the top-secret Norwegian Sea Penguin. Experiments with the novel rocket were carried out in all places where she was at the time. In November 1970 the paths crossed with two Soviet agents, named Rubanov and Popov, as the security police in Trondheim dutifully noted. Whether the persons met can no longer be determined from the files.
According to another point of view, based on the travel activities of the woman, described as more than elegant, it was a possibility that she was a high-class prostitute who travelled to a specific circle of clients throughout Europe. Perhaps also a drug courier who was killed because of a business in Isdal?
Only the names that the Isdal woman, as she was later called in the absence of a real identity, indicate an activity that had to do with intelligence services at the height of the Cold War.
Genevieve Lancier, Claudia Tielt, Vera Schlosseneck, Claudia Nielsen, Alexia Zarna-Merchez, Vera Jarle, Finella Lorck and Elisabeth Leenhouwer, in addition to other names during the first test phase of the Penguin Rocket: The unknown woman used the wrong names E. Velding and L. on this trip.
Selling, according to the Norwegian secret service. Probably, to cover any possible tracks.
According to the language, as witnesses assure who saw her at the end, in November 1970, shortly before her death, she was German. However, she also pretended to be a South African antique dealer to an Italian gala, the photographer Giovanni Trimboli, who had invited her to dinner and took her in his car. That was a few days before her even more mysterious demise in the lonely gorge.
Indeed, she was a child from the time before the war, born around 1926-1930, knew the profession "Verziererin" in the porcelain industry, which is located in Franconia, near the then Czechoslovakian
border, in Selb and its surroundings, had a great tradition. At least she had to know about it. Perhaps through a direct relative or in the context of the so-called Kinderlandverschickung at the end of the Second World War.
She had, for whatever reason, made strange statements on registration forms.
This issue is also indicated by the analysis that was initiated decades later. After an almost creepy exhumation years ago. They got everything from the woman, fingerprints, DNA, the dentures, which raises more questions than it answers. Some sources indicate that the dentition in Latin America was processed in this way. There is no sure indication of this, except the time of the unknown in Spain, probably in the Burgos area, in the north. In December 1970 news came that the dental work had been done in Italy or Spain.
The question is, does anyone recognize this work?
The teeth must have been worked on about three years before her death.
The lower jaw of Isdal woman, Kripos Norge, 2019
The upper jaw of Isdal woman, Kripos Norge, 2019
The work could also have been done in former Czechoslovakia or the GDR. The gold, however, points to work in the Western world at that time. Probably in Germany.
Who can remember this specific set of teeth?
Does the trail lead to Ljubljana in former Yugoslavia?
Infiltrated and exfiltrated the beautiful unknown over Yugoslavia or optionally the
Czechoslovakia? The whole case refers to the KoKo and its international art trade.
On June 3, 1995, a Saturday, an emergency call was received by the police in Oslo at about 7.58 pm.
What initially looked like a routine operation turned out to be one of the most mysterious criminal cases in Scandinavia over the following years. The operation took the officers to the then noble hotel "Oslo Plaza" at the main station of the Norwegian capital.
A security guard claimed to have heard a shot from room 2805, on the 28th floor. Two people were allegedly in the room at the time.
The circumstance was important for later investigations.
Someone other than the dead person found in the room on the night of arrival, probably used one of the room key cards.
This happened at about 12:20 pm on the day of arrival. Two days before the events described here. After that, the woman who checked in under the name Jennifer Fergate was only seen twice. Once she gave a princely tip to room service, otherwise the "Do not disturb" sign was hanging on the door. However, the unknown woman must have left the room and also the hotel. When this happened, the records in the Plaza gave no answer.
Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
The room door had been secured from the inside. The plastic key cards were lying in the room.
On the bed, as described in the article "The mysterious death in Oslo Plaza", lay the body of "Jennifer Fergate". A young cultured person, as described by witnesses. The woman was lying on the bed to her left and staring up. A single bullet hole in her forehead. The room was dark. It was quickly established that she had registered under a false name, with a non-existent Belgian address, together with a companion, Lois Fairgate (Fergate). Only Lois Fairgate was missing, he had been seen once, checking in. He was described at about 1.85 m and at that time between 35-40 years.
The purpose of the visit of the stranger, who was in the room and who had been reminded several times to come to the reception, was not clear. She had failed to pay the bill (about 300 euro). The unknown woman had exceeded the credit limit. She had booked the room by telephone for the first time on May 22, 1995, and had rescheduled it for another date on May 31, 1995. Flight list evaluations from these days gave no information about the unknown person.
Traces pointing towards terrorism in which the unknown person could have been involved were quickly discarded. A possible environmental action was also ruled out because of the then known Brent Spar, which was to be sunk off Norway by the oil company Shell.
During these years, the peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians, from which Oslo I and Oslo II emerged, also took place under Norwegian mediation. It is hard to imagine that someone with such a weighty mission could, under these circumstances, stay in an Oslo hotel, have a meagre last meal and then be shot. By whomever.
A meagre last meal, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
The only thing that remained was the intelligence gathering of information about the Bosnian war. Whole families had saved themselves to Norway. It was the first great wave of escape that had started during the siege of Sarajevo.
Only with what purpose, then, had she travelled to Oslo on untraceable paths and in mysterious legend? The legend was so shaky that it could have been noticed at any time.
There were numerous other theories, but in this case, they could only be understood as working theories. The police in Oslo simply had too few starting points before the dead woman was buried in 1996.
Was the Plaza woman a drug courier? There was nothing to suggest that she was. Not even the luggage. According to her profile, the unknown woman was not a drug dealer who had brought goods to Scandinavia.
Was she a professional assassin or a contract killer? The whole situation would be grotesque, according to the later analysis from 2017, she was born around 1971.
Prostitution in the field of an internationally operating high-class play mate was also ruled out because the woman did not even have cosmetics. The handbag that she had with her when checking in was missing at the site inspection. Even her trousers or skirt were missing.
At that time, the death of the young stranger quickly became the archive of the "Isdal woman" and Kambomans added. What the investigators didn't intend to regard the death of Jane Doe from Plaza Hotel suicide. Too much spoke against it, like removing all labels from the clothes, shoes, and any personal belongings, such as papers, wallet, make-up, from the possessions of the dead. However, the dead woman would have been wearing make-up, the newspapers reported at the time.
Also, the woman, in whose right hand a Belgian 9 mm Browning from Herstal was found, was missing any traces of blood and gunpowder, which would have been typical for such a situation if the woman had judged herself. The weapon was probably made in 1990 or 1991. The gun was fired once for test firing, probably by soundproofing it with a cushion, and then again when the fatal shot was fired.
Right hand, Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
Test shot, Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
How did she come into possession of the pistol and how did this pistol come with her to Norway?
It is also unclear whether the fingerprints of the dead were put into context in Germany.
It was interesting that the gun had been treated with caustic liquid to literally destroy the recognizability of the series.
Since World War II, there are only about 15 corpses that could not be identified in Norway. And only three of the cases seem somehow fatally connected.
The door was locked from the inside, and the key cards were in the room. Investigators only found clothes without labels, all name tags and tags on her clothes were removed, a men's perfume, (Ungaro Pour L'Homme 1 cologne) a travel bag and a briefcase with 32 shots of ammunition.
The woman, born around 1971, wore a Citizen Aqualand (model: CQ-1021-50, serial number: C022-088093 Y, 2010779, GN-4-S). This watch was made in January 1992 and required batteries of type 370 from the Swiss battery manufacturer Renata.
Diving watch Citizen Aqualand, Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
Punches on all batteries indicated that the batteries had been produced in December 1994. Renata explained that the batteries were delivered to shops between December 1994 and January 1995. The punch marks of the watchmaker were W395 (W/change/3/March/95/1995)
Batteries of Renata, stamps, Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
The batteries were probably sold in March 1995 at Hertie Hamburg, Barmbek. At that time it was common practice in this former department store, the "Klotz von Barmbek", to attach such a punch with a nail. It was certainly not the only watchmaker's shop that handled it in this way. However, it is a starting point.
In this context it is interesting whether the dead woman belonged to water sports or diving club.
A jacket of the German fashion brand René Lezard caught the investigators' eye. The Schwarzacher manufacturer René Lezard had just made the jackets more expensive in 1995, it is still not clear where and when this jacket was bought.
In the room the police also found a green-turquoise canvas bag of the German brand Travelite, which produced suitcases and travel accessories in Germany since 1949. Whether this bag was purchased from Hertie - especially for the trip to the Plaza in Oslo - cannot be clarified any more, but in 1995 suitcases and bags of this kind were sold in the Hamburg department store.
The black leather bag of the German brand Braun Büffel from Kirn testifies to the fact that the dead did not exactly vegetate impoverished during her lifetime. The briefcase was part of a collection produced in 1986-91. The gold ring, which the investigators could secure on the right middle finger of the dead woman, had been made in Germany. The quality of the ring (333/8k) was more likely to indicate that the ring had been purchased in a shopping centre, in a chain store at the time, than at a brand jeweller.
Who can remember the gold ring on the right hand of the unknown dead? Who sold this type of ring in the mid-1990s?
The small gold earring worn by the deceased could not be identified.
The unknown deceased must have lived in orderly circumstances. The work on her teeth had been done with porcelain and gold. This work of a dentist could also have been done in Switzerland, Belgium or the USA. She weighed about 67 kg and was 1.59 m tall, had blue eyes and dark hair, perhaps these were dyed.
Years later, after an enamel analysis, the trail led back to Germany.
"For us, the region around Berlin is interesting. Maybe the woman was born in the former GDR", one of the investigators told the Norwegian Gazette vg Nyheter in 2017, who examined the case again in detail. After 22 years the exhumation was ordered.
A dentist who has performed her numerous dental treatments?
Who can provide information about the clothes of the mysterious Jennifer Fergate? The bras could have been bought from C&A (Brenningmeyer) in 1994.
Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
Jennifer Fergate, Kriminal Politi Sentralen, Oslo, Norge
After further research, a completely different picture emerges.
A trade in used goods of the special socialist kind. An almost unexplored exhibit of German history, allegedly closed down in 1990. But behind the scenes, there was more going on than those responsible could have been happy with. ZERV was almost helplessly at the mercy of the agile embargo criminals from East Berlin.
The privatization, respectively reorganization, of the state-owned enterprise ZERV was art trade from 1990 onwards. Research was carried out accordingly, but many of the looted goods no longer turned up. Many warehouses were still well stocked after reunification. Works of art and antiques were privately distributed by the remaining members of the KoKo.
At KuA GmbH, the antiques and works of art stolen by the Stasi in the early 1960s, which had been widely circulated in the GDR since Operation Light, were distributed to non-socialist countries. In the process, stolen paintings and coin and stamp collections were sold via western contacts of KuA GmbH with the knowledge of the then Minister Mielke if state security raids.
Many traces of Stasi stolen goods led to Scandinavia, including this case:
One of the examples is the Sophien treasure. On 20 September 1977, the "Sophienschatz", 58 golden grave goods worth approx. 3.0 million euros disappeared from a tank display case of the Dresden City Museum.
In 1999 38 pieces of the collection appeared in Oslo: In 1999 a coin dealer tried to sell 38 to auction off parts of the Sophien Treasure in Oslo. Parts of the loot turned up in England. The Oslo
Coin dealer Gunnar Thesen had acquired the pieces in good faith from the Copenhagen-based dealer Arne Jacob Becker (†1983) from KuA GmbH. He acted for the KoKo in non-socialist foreign countries to raise urgently needed foreign currency.
Who can provide relevant information in this respect?
Did anyone with the appearance of Jennifer Fergate in 1995 work for a group of art connoisseurs who wanted to recover items stolen from the KoKo?
Does anyone know the woman from the art trade or real estate industry as a secretary?