R144m ransom demand for missing wife of wealthy Norwegian investor

R144m ransom demand for missing wife of wealthy Norwegian investor

Police in Norway have suggested the wife of a millionaire real estate investor and energy magnate who has been missing for 10 weeks may have been kidnapped.

Business magazine Kapital estimated Tom Hagen's net worth at around €175m.

In addition to investigations by local police, Interpol and Europol are now also looking into the case, although they have received "no signs of life" from Hagen since her disappearance in October.

At centre, a view of the home of Norwegian billionaire Tom Hagen and his wife Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen in Fjellhamar.

Investigators refused to comment on that report, but said global police were cooperating on the case. Police refused to confirm the exact amount, but said they have advised Hagen's family not to comply.

Norwegian tabloid Verdens Gang, quoting unnamed sources, reported that a ransom demand corresponding to €9m had been made, payable in the Monero cryptocurrency.

This is because the note specifically stated that Anne-Elisabeth would be murdered if Hagen involved the police.

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Broeske said "those behind have chosen to communicate digitally and we have had no other type of contact".

"The family sees this as a cruel and inhumane act", lawyer Svein Holden told reporters.

Norwegian police confirmed that "a woman in her late 60s is believed to have been kidnapped from her home in Lorenskog", around 12 miles from Oslo and 31 miles from the Swedish border, but did not disclose her identity.

The kidnappers are said to have asked for the ransom to be paid in cryptocurrency Monero, which can be sent and received anonymously. We have not known anything comparable in this country.

"As in all serious criminal cases, time is an important factor, and we rely on tips.to help us find the missing woman". Mr Broeske declined to comment other than saying "the threats (in the note) were of a very serious character".

The couple lived "a rather anonymous lifestyle", according to Norwegian broadcaster NRK.

The police have been working on this case for a long duration as one of their top secret operations.

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