Kidnappers in Norway demand $10M Monero ransom for millionaire's wife

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The wife of a Norwegian multimillionaire missing since October 31 probably has been kidnapped, police said Wednesday, adding that her suspected abductors have demanded a ransom reported to be over $10 million.

"There has been demand for ransom, and serious threats have been made in this case", Police Inspector Tommy Broeske told a news conference. Police had urged the family not to pay any ransom.

Tom Hagen's net worth was estimated at around $200 million by Norway's financial magazine Kapital, which ranked him the 172nd wealthiest person in the country.

The newspaper reported that the note said Ms Falkevik Hagen would be killed if police were involved. Broeske declined to comment other than saying "the threats (in the note) were of a very serious character".

The house (C) of Norwegian real estate investor Tom Hagen and his wife Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen, who according to the authorities is suspected to have been kidnapped, in Fjellhamar, Norway, Jan. 9, 2019.

Norwegian tabloid Verdens Gang, quoting unnamed sources, reported that a demand for ransom corresponding to 9 million euros (US $10 million) had been made, payable in the Monero cryptocurrency.

Kidnappers in Norway demand $10M Monero ransom for millionaire's wife

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

As a result, investigators on the case are still left with "no suspects", despite having assistance from Interpol and Europol, and have Hagen's wealth behind them.

It remains unclear what the exact figure of the demanded ransom is, but local Norwegian media claim the kidnappers asked for more than $10 million. "It is demanding and exhausting to be in such a situation over a long period of time", he said.

"Our main theory is that the victim was kidnapped by unidentified perpetrators at her home" in Lorenskog, about 20 kilometers (12 miles) from Oslo, he said, adding that police have from the beginning examined several possible theories about her disappearance.

Hagen's wife disappeared suddenly from the family's Lørenskog home on October 31st, and hasn't been seen since.

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