Norway Norway - Isdalen, WhtFem 503UFNOR, multiple aliases, multilingual, Nov'70

I've come here because a few websleuths on the Marion Barter WS have mentioned similarities to a POI Belgian criminal Ric Blum now in his 80's. ,
He Travelled to Europe Feb 1970 for approx 10 months. Recent Belgian female victims coming forward with stories of his interest in poison, swindling money, isolating victims, travelling different days, changing appearance
He has had at least 10 passports in different names, 37 aliases. Jailed in France for fraud, writing checks without cover, confidence tricks etc in early 70's
He is a romance swindler also 4 trips to Europe in 1995
Jennifer fergate mystery could fit his MO too.
 
Hi, everyone! Very new here, so please excuse any newbie errors in advance. I noticed in several of the earliest posts on this thread, members expressed their desire for an English version of the book titled "Isdals Kvinnen - Operasjon Isotops" written by Tore Osland regarding this case. It appears the book was published in English in 2018 under the title "The Isdal Woman - Operation Isotopsy: Death in Ice Valley." I hope this is helpful, and happy reading! :)
 
Hi, everyone! Very new here, so please excuse any newbie errors in advance. I noticed in several of the earliest posts on this thread, members expressed their desire for an English version of the book titled "Isdals Kvinnen - Operasjon Isotops" written by Tore Osland regarding this case. It appears the book was published in English in 2018 under the title "The Isdal Woman - Operation Isotopsy: Death in Ice Valley." I hope this is helpful, and happy reading! :)
Thanks for letting us know and welcome to Websleuths! :)
 
I was in contact with Kripos (among others) last autumn due to my work at the time, and they told me Kripos is open to using forensic genealogy to solve old criminal cases, and they are in the process of investigating the possibilities of doing this, but according to their assessment report (still in the writing/research stage, not published yet), the method will primarily be used in unresolved criminal cases - not for identification purposes. Since they are both officially ruled as suicides (AFAIK), it seems like we'll have to wait a bit longer for the Isdal woman and Jennifer Fergate's identifications, but, on the other hand, perhaps other unsolved cases where biological material exists will be resolved, if the legislation allows the police to use the method.
Aaaand here we go!:

Norway has just solved its first case using genetic genealogy.
For the moment, this is a pilot project between Kripos, The National Archives, and Oslo University Hospital in an effort to solve cold cases in Norway, but as stated in the quote, both Isdalskvinnen and Jennifer F. are officially ruled as suicides (AFAIK), so they are most likely not prioritised atm, but at least the method has been green lit.

 
Aaaand here we go!:

Norway has just solved its first case using genetic genealogy.
For the moment, this is a pilot project between Kripos, The National Archives, and Oslo University Hospital in an effort to solve cold cases in Norway, but as stated in the quote, both Isdalskvinnen and Jennifer F. are officially ruled as suicides (AFAIK), so they are most likely not prioritised atm, but at least the method has been green lit.


Wow! Thank you for the update!
 
That’s great news. Surely the answer to her identity is through DNA. I understand it is classed as a suicide rather than murder, but given the international profile of the case, maybe that may give it some kind of higher priority.

Many thanks for the update though, good progress that other countries are embracing the technology that has given so many answers.
 
One would think that learning this woman's identity should be high on the priority list. If she was possibly a spy, learning who she really was and what her mission might have been would be of national security importance.

Simply saying, "Oh she committed suicide - that was the end of her." just doesn't cut it.
 
This NZZ article investigates potential ties between a Swiss nazi banker and the Isdal Woman : The Isdal woman: an explosive new lead points to a Swiss banker

Idk what to think of it for many reasons but for now I will leave it up to you folks to make your own opinion on this.
Interesting new potential angles. Although on the heavy water connection I'm not sure the dates make sense. The relevant heavy water transactions occurred around 1960. By as early as 1966 it was plausible that Israel had a functioning weapon. So it's not clear that these activities had a meaningful relevance as late as Autumn 1970.
 
Decided to take a break from the domestic case I work on, and watch the excellent NRK Norway/BBC joint podcast "Death in Ice Valley" on YT about the mysterious Isdal Woman
My gut conclusion is there is a specific reason the investigation was halted after only three weeks, and that was that it had international implications between countries. Eerily similar to the 1995 Jennifer Fairgate case in a lot of ways, it appears local police were shut down abruptly by a higher authority. If you listen to all of the episodes one of the hosts Marit interviews a supposed legendary Norwegian "spy hunter" of the Cold War era. The man is 90, and he begins to tell the most preposterous thing I've ever heard in any former intelligence agent interview I've ever listened to. He kept talking about the woman was known to walk around town with a can of hairspray, and it probably blew up on her! LOL I couldn't believe this man could keep a straight face saying that to her. It was like he was thumbing his nose at the amateurs knowing he knew the truth. There was so much going on in Norway in 1970 it literally could be anything. Penguin missile tests, looking for former Nazis by Israeli groups, terrorist cells, art theft ring, organized crime etc etc. But with the Bergen police being so obviously stymied I'm going with international cover up. So which country? My money is on Israel. Though she was too sloppy to be a legit Mossad field operative. So she probably wasn't a major spy for say the KGB/Stasi/MI6/CIA etc. Good spies keep in the shadows, have solid legends (cover stories), and do not travel as much as she did. Her movements sound more like a courier of some kind. Later DNA, and isotope tests helped a bit "if" they are accurate. So being born in the Nuremberg area around 1925+ aka Nazi Germany is very intriguing to me. I also thought instantly of her being Jewish, or Roma/gypsy having to flee west. But that's just door #1 Door #2 could be the opposite. Her family could have been die hard Nazis, and she could have traveled accordingly based on German occupation areas. I read the theory about the former Nazi Swiss banker Genoud, and it could have some meat, but not enough yet. There's a man named David who has proposed about 40 different theories I skimmed through, and made me feel like I was reading a Dan Brown novel. I don't like endless rabbit hole theories. I'm a stick to the known facts sleuth. In summary I personally don't believe this case will ever be solved unless her DNA can be matched to living relatives, or the country, or countries that I suspect are involved release their full files on the case. Don't hold your breath.
 
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I dont think so.
All we need is a bit of DNA and we are closer to everything. I guess the real story is neither Russian spy nor Mossad agent.
Correct, real state sponsored spies 1. do not use multiple aliases 2. do not travel back and forth, they are stationary and invisible. She plausibly may have just been a messenger/courier.
I'm also dismissing the "spy leaving the life" theory. Especially if she was a defector from East Germany Stasi. Once again she wouldn't travel back and forth, and keep changing her aliases.
Whoever this woman was she wasn't a good professional spy that's 100%
The shutdown of the investigation by the Bergen Police may like I said have involved a country like Israel who had an interest in this woman's activities either as an enemy, or ally.
One thing that caught my eye is that she used the city of Ljubljana on one of her hotel registrations as her place of birth. The rest were all Belgium. Well I can't even spell that city without help, so she had to have been very familiar with it. It's now the capital of Slovenia, but in WWII it was part of pro Nazi Yugoslavia. Just something to ponder.
 
Whoever this woman was she wasn't a good professional spy that's 100%
Agreed. I think she was just a woman trying to escape her personal demons - an abusive partner perhaps, or maybe the danger was only in her head and she was suffering from some sort of mental illness.
 
Correct, real state sponsored spies 1. do not use multiple aliases 2. do not travel back and forth, they are stationary and invisible. She plausibly may have just been a messenger/courier.
I'm also dismissing the "spy leaving the life" theory. Especially if she was a defector from East Germany Stasi. Once again she wouldn't travel back and forth, and keep changing her aliases.
Whoever this woman was she wasn't a good professional spy that's 100%
The shutdown of the investigation by the Bergen Police may like I said have involved a country like Israel who had an interest in this woman's activities either as an enemy, or ally.
One thing that caught my eye is that she used the city of Ljubljana on one of her hotel registrations as her place of birth. The rest were all Belgium. Well I can't even spell that city without help, so she had to have been very familiar with it. It's now the capital of Slovenia, but in WWII it was part of pro Nazi Yugoslavia. Just something to ponder.

Agreed. I think she was just a woman trying to escape her personal demons - an abusive partner perhaps, or maybe the danger was only in her head and she was suffering from some sort of mental illness.

I agree most spies do not carry multiple identities around with them and put themselves out there exposed.

I do find it interesting that she used multiple aliases, and in many cases of that, the people just tend to be complete and total weirdos. I point to Lori Ruff, Joseph Newton Chandler, and Kimberly Kessler's cases if you want to hear shocking stories about extremely strange behavior by identity thefts. (Two small tidbits, according to his coworkers Chandler once drove over 500 miles to an outlet store and allegedly drove back immediately because "there was no parking". Kessler was once seen eating raw ground beef wit her hands)

For two cases of spy deaths under mysterious circumstances, I recommend:

1. Ralph Sigler, a US Army double agent who was feeding the KGB with secret level documents that where actually incorrect information. He failed a polygraph administered routinely by the US Army and was found in hotel, allegedly dying by suicide by stacking up items to elevate a chair, bounding his biceps with electrical cables, inserting them in the outlet, and dipping them in a cup of water. Ruled suicide, of course.

2. Gareth Williams, an MI6 spy who was also wrapped up with Russians. He was found in a hotel room with the heat on full blast in the summer time, with a wardrobe of wigs and women's clothing. He was found in a bathtub locked inside a duffel bag, with the lock on the outside, without any of his fingerprints found anywhere despite the lack of gloves inside the room anywhere, or in the bag with him. Oh, also ruled suicide, shocker!
 
I agree most spies do not carry multiple identities around with them and put themselves out there exposed.

I do find it interesting that she used multiple aliases, and in many cases of that, the people just tend to be complete and total weirdos. I point to Lori Ruff, Joseph Newton Chandler, and Kimberly Kessler's cases if you want to hear shocking stories about extremely strange behavior by identity thefts. (Two small tidbits, according to his coworkers Chandler once drove over 500 miles to an outlet store and allegedly drove back immediately because "there was no parking". Kessler was once seen eating raw ground beef wit her hands)

For two cases of spy deaths under mysterious circumstances, I recommend:

1. Ralph Sigler, a US Army double agent who was feeding the KGB with secret level documents that where actually incorrect information. He failed a polygraph administered routinely by the US Army and was found in hotel, allegedly dying by suicide by stacking up items to elevate a chair, bounding his biceps with electrical cables, inserting them in the outlet, and dipping them in a cup of water. Ruled suicide, of course.

2. Gareth Williams, an MI6 spy who was also wrapped up with Russians. He was found in a hotel room with the heat on full blast in the summer time, with a wardrobe of wigs and women's clothing. He was found in a bathtub locked inside a duffel bag, with the lock on the outside, without any of his fingerprints found anywhere despite the lack of gloves inside the room anywhere, or in the bag with him. Oh, also ruled suicide, shocker!
I've read about both cases, no I think this woman was a messenger/courier of some kind. She left Norway, and came back. Like I said good spies don't do that. The determination that she was more than likely born in Nuremberg Nazi Germany in the mid to late 1920's opens up so many possibilities to future connections. The carbon wisdom tooth analysis definitely confirms she was born before the first nuclear test in 1945. The hotspots based on chronological movements in early childhood seem to go from Nuremberg to the German border, possibly Belgium, or Switzerland, and even Wales UK. Which has led some to speculate she could have been one of the 10,000 "Kindertransport" mostly Jewish children the British rescued and sent to the UK before 1940. So many unanswered questions.
 

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