An amateur submarine maker is in custody in Copenhagen as police investigate the disappearance of a Swedish journalist who had been onboard his vessel before he is alleged to have deliberately sunk it off Denmark’s east coast.
Peter Madsen, a Danish inventor whose crowdfunded submarine Nautilus sank near Copenhagen on Friday, was arrested on preliminary manslaughter charges but has denied responsibility for the fate of 30-year-old Kim Wall.
He claims she disembarked on an island about three-and-a-half hours into their trip on Thursday night, according to Copenhagen police.
Police spokesman Jens Møller Jensen said on Sunday that the submarine had been raised from the sea bed and searched but no body had been discovered. The search for Wall in the water, from the air and on land, continues.
Møller Jensen added that there were indications that Madsen deliberately sank his submarine.
On Saturday, after a two-hour custody hearing held in private, Judge Kari Sørensen ordered that Madsen be held in pre-trial detention for 24 days while the investigation into Wall’s disappearance continued.
Prosecutor Louise Pedersen said Madsen faced a preliminary manslaughter charge “for having killed in an unknown way and in an unknown place Kim Isabell Frerika Wall of Sweden sometime after Thursday 5pm”.
Madsen’s defence lawyer, Betina Hald Engmark, said her client maintains his innocence. He is “willing to cooperate” and hasn’t decided whether to appeal the detention ruling, Hald Engmark said.
Wall, a freelance journalist, had been writing about Madsen and his submarine at the time of disappearing, according to Swedish and Danish reports.
“It is with great dismay that we received the news that Kim went missing during an assignment in Denmark,” her family said.
She lives between New York and Beijing, the family said, and has written for titles including the Guardian, New York Times, South China Morning Post and Vice. Her LinkedIn page says she writes about…