Cops Tell Millionaire 'Not to Pay' Ransom for Kidnapped Wife

Norway's Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen vanished on Halloween
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 9, 2019 8:32 AM CST
Kidnappers of Millionaire's Wife Demand $10M in Crypto
Police cars are seen in Tamokdalen, Norway, on Thursday, following an avalanche.   (Terje Bendiksby/NTB Scanpix via AP)

The wife of a Norwegian businessman with a $200 million fortune was kidnapped months ago, police announced Wednesday, noting the case was kept on "a low profile" because "very serious threats have been made." Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen, wife of real estate investor Tom Hagen, hasn't been seen since vanishing from her home east of Oslo on Halloween, though Norwegian media report kidnappers have demanded the equivalent of $10 million in Monero cryptocurrency for her safe return, per the BBC. "As things now stand, we advise the family not to pay," Police Inspector Tommy Broeske said at a news conference, per Reuters, noting there's been no sign since October to show Hagen, 68, is safe.

Still, "our goal is to find the woman alive and reunite her with the family" and there are no suspects, Broeske continued, per the AP. "We need more information." Norway's Aftenposten newspaper reported Wednesday that Hagen was abducted from a bathroom of the Lorenskog home she shares with her husband, before kidnappers engaged in "limited dialogue" over the Internet, per the BBC. Norway's VG newspaper reports a note found in the home threatened Hagen would be killed if police were involved. A lawyer for Tom Hagen, among Norway's 200 richest people, calls the kidnapping "a cruel and an inhuman act," per the AP. ''It is demanding and exhausting to be in such a situation over a long period of time," he says. (More kidnapping stories.)

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