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Biggest amateur-built sub sinks – owner is suspected of killing passenger (arstechnica.com)
159 points by revelation 99 days ago | hide | past | web | 145 comments | favorite



There seems to be a lot of confusion about what's implied and what's known. I think I've IDed an accurate timeline:

19:00 - Madsen and journalist depart for a trial run for a story that she's writing.

22:30 - Madsen claims he dropped the journalist off at this time, at a restaurant at the North end of the island.

02:30 - Journalist's husband reports her missing.

02:50 - Repeated attempts to reach the sub via radio are unsuccessful.

03:40 - Sub is reported missing by the police.

07:00 - General alarm set for Baltic, instructing all vessels to look for the sub.

10:15 - Sub spotted by Harbor Master in Koge Bay, South of where it was meant to be. Harbor Master talks to Madsen who claims he hadn't been in contact due to technical issues but is heading for harbor.

11:00 - Passing vessel sees the sub with Madsen on the tower. Madsen disappears below deck, then returns to the tower and the sub begins to sink. In 30 seconds, it's completely submerged and Madsen is rescued. Madsen tells the rescuers that he was the only passenger.

17:45 - After interviewing the journalist's family and Madsen, Madsen is placed under arrest for the death of the journalist. Madsen maintains that he dropped her off near a restaurant at 22:30 the previous day.

It's indicated that the location where Madsen claimed to drop her off is blanketed with security cameras (whose footage the police have). The sub has been raised and will be inspected shortly. This isn't at all a case of "he panicked when the sub sank", there's a nearly 12-hour gap in his known location and even if you believe his story, the journalist that he dropped off at a restaurant hasn't been seen in a few days now.


This story is developing extremely fast and is ripe for an episode of a crime show.

The sub now been initially inspected and the police reports that nobody - dead or alive - was found inside.

To add to the mystery, police reports that Mr. Madsen has changed his explanation, but the police will not clarify in what way.

Management of the restaurant say they have not noticed a submarine (!) but have handed over all surveillance recordings to the police.


Do you have a source for this? I'm interested in following along as well.


Like sibling I'm keeping up to date via the Danish National Radios (think BBC) news site.

Here's the latest development: Sub was sailing around without lights on in heavily trafficked water, causing a near collision [1]

[1] http://www.dr.dk/nyheder/indland/fragtskib-kolliderede-naest...


The info on Peter Madsen changing his story was on the Danish TV news an hour ago. http://www.dr.dk/nyheder/indland/drabschef-ingen-personer-fu... (in Danish)


Given the fairly clear-cut factual dispute, I can't imagine this won't be resolved one way or another fairly soon. Madsen claims he dropped off the now-missing passenger at 10:30pm before going back out on the sub. Investigators suspect that he didn't, and she sank with the sub. Since the sub's been located, and in fairly shallow water, investigators should be able to determine whether there's a body inside it or not soon.


They've already brought the sub to the surface [1] and are towing it to a harbor for investigation.

[1] https://bt.bmcdn.dk/media/cache/resolve/image_1240/image/104...


Link didn't open in Firefox focus (trackers on an image file?) so Archive fo https://archive.fo/W7sTX


He could have dumped the body somewhere else and only sank the sub to wash away the evidence. The sub was missing for over 12 hours. Who knows how far that thing can get in that time.


5h each way (giving 2h for whatever), it can probably do ~10km/h[0], so that's likely 50~55km assuming wiki has it right.

Here's hoping nothing happened and the journalist just took a nap at a hostel or something, but the optics are quite bad, it's a lot of coincidences which look pretty nasty.

[0] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UC3_Nautilus


She's been reported missing since Thursday, that's one heck of a nap, the likely explanation that she is dead.


I think it's much more likely that the sub sank by accident and he denies she was on board, than a planned murder happening.


It didn't have to be a planned murder. It's possible it wasn't premeditated, but happened. He dumps the body, then considers the forensic value of the sub. Navigates to a different spot, then scuttles it to wash anything incriminating away.


I don't understand this speculation. There are better plans if he was clam and had time enough to dump a body, navigate a submarine to a different spot, and scuttle it to wash away evidence.

He could just claim that they both abandoned the submarine and then got separated. What benefits are there to make a elaborated plan?


No body was found on the sub, and police suspect the sub was deliberately sunk.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-40916787

He claimed earlier that she was dropped off many hours prior to the incident. He apparently has a new and different story now, though the police aren't saying what it is.

He can't claim they both abandoned the submarine when it sunk, as there were eyewitnesses to that event.


Making an elaborate plan triggers unconscious support from people who rely on Occam’s Razor to evaluate whether something is likely or not.


I'm confused as to why that plan would be considered elaborate. Haphazard and panicked seems to describe it better. Which fits Occam's razor just fine.

What is likely, given what's known at this point? I don't see some more likely scenario. Her body wasn't on the submarine, and the eyewitness account of the sinking supports the idea of a deliberate scuttle. The police say it looks deliberate as well.


I think the allegation is that she died because the sub drowned. He isn't alleged to have killed her any other way yet, and speculation of another way is just speculation.


The idea that she went down with the sub is speculation as well.


Unless she discovered that the submarine was being used to smuggle illegal danish cinnamon rolls[1] It's likely that she died when the submarine failed.

Ships aren't build with built-in scuttle capabilities, military submarines can be scuttled because you can blow yourself up.

The likely scenario is that the submarine has failed, she either died before she could escape or the more likely scenario is that Madsen panicked, saved himself and left her behind to die.

[1]http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/europe/eu/10538172...


> The likely scenario is that the submarine has failed, she either died before she could escape or the more likely scenario is that Madsen panicked, saved himself and left her behind to die.

They were looking for the submarine for hours before it showed up and sank in front of eyewitnesses. It was in the news already at that stage. I think he may have panicked when he learnt that everybody was looking for him and the woman and then sank the sub. One eyewitness saw him in the tower, then he went down into the sub, then back up, and then it sank. My guess would be that he went down and pushed the submerge button, went back up and got himself "rescued" by a passing boat.


>Ships aren't build with built-in scuttle capabilities,

Submarines are. Ballast tanks plus leaving a hatch open.

Also, the sub didn't sink until 11am the day after. She did not plan on an overnight trip in the sub. That's why I think there's more to this story than an accidental sinking.


Hatch open or closed doesn't even matter, it's just that with the hatch open it will go down a lot faster and the interior will be flooded.


That... matters. A lot. Where are you even coming from where "the interior will be flooded" doesn't matter _for a seagoing vessel._


If you want to sink it.


Sure. I suspect seawater in the interior was the whole point in this case. Reaches every nook and cranny.


> Ships aren't build with built-in scuttle capabilities,

The vast majority of small boats have through hole fittings for things like the heads (toilet) or cooling water intake for the engine. Opening the valve and smashing the pipe off is a trivial way to sink the boat. Larger ships will have similar fittings though the sinking will take longer. As noted by your others there's ways to intentionally flood a submarine too even if they're not intended for that purpose.


"Small boats" manufactured in industrialized nations have flotation built into the hull. You can get them underwater by knocking out a hole, but they won't go to the bottom without significant damage.


> "Small boats" manufactured in industrialized nations have flotation built into the hull. You can get them underwater by knocking out a hole, but they won't go to the bottom without significant damage.

Guess it depends upon you definition of "Small Boat". Certainly your standard mono hulled yacht will sink rapidly if you fill it with water (which is purposefully done on occasion, if sailing across an ocean and major damage forces you to abandon ship to another vessel the insurance company may ask you to sink the boat. It's not worth the costs required to salvage and is a danger shipping if left afloat).


This boat is clearly a custom job.


"11:00 - Passing vessel sees the sub with Madsen on the tower. Madsen disappears below deck, then returns to the tower and the sub begins to sink. In 30 seconds, it's completely submerged and Madsen is rescued"

that makes this quite unlikely


I don't buy the accident. Not with him going down, going back up and then the sub began to sink. Note that the ballast tanks in a sub filling up are enough to make it sink, all he had to do was command a dive and if the sub has it bypass the tower hatch interlock (which would seem like a basic precaution).


yea, made the comment when less was known


> Given the fairly clear-cut factual dispute, I can't imagine this won't be resolved one way or another fairly soon

The police may know much more than they have told the public. They very quickly arrested the man, and they must have had a good reason to do so. The court also jailed him for a couple of weeks, based on evidence presented behind closed doors - the reason for the closed doors being "of respect to the family". There was some evidence presented which would have been of harm to the family, more harm than the public fact of suspected murder. The police may already know most of the story and only needs some time to build the case for the judge.


> Investigators suspect that he didn't, and she sank with the sub.

Investigators also suspect that the sub was scuttled to conceal evidence.


Really shallow! 22 feet. That's within the range they let uncertified divers scuba at.


"Uncertified divers escorted by an experienced, certified diver / instructor and after a safety and equipment briefing."

You probably meant "divers with a basic SCUBA certification" (open water, ~30ft depth and conditions similar to your previous dives)


I think most Open Water Dive certifications are to a recommended depth of about 18 metres / 60 feet, and Advanced Open Water Dive certificates are to a depth of about 30 metres / 100 feet.[1]

1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Open_Water_Diver


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diver_certification#European_a...

12m and 20m are basic recommendations listed here. I seem to remember 30ft and 100ft (plus following tables / computers) as the recommended limits.


Thank you for linking to that. It would seem my knowledge is outdated by 17 years. I've noticed recently I've claimed knowledge of something only to realise it was circa 20 years ago, at which point I then loudly blurt out "Back in my day!".

I have a recreational dive certificate issued by NASDS Australasia in 2000. Looks like NASDS Australasia has since faded from view, and NASDS USA joined with SSI around 1999.

It appears SSI adhere to ISO 24801[1]

1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scuba_Schools_International#Re...


I am not certified and the three times I've been out we have done 40' max depth. 22' is definitely within range of somebody who took a 30 minute session and is out with an instructor.


No, that's not what I meant. That said, no instructor with morals is letting an uncertified diver go inside a wreck.


I would hope so since I've been in swimming pools deeper than that. Deepest pool I've been to the bottom of was 32 feet I think.

I don't get how anyone could dive for fun, it's scary down that deep :)


If you're comfortable enough to dive to the bottom of a 32 foot pool unaided, I would suggest you give scuba diving a try, assuming you have the opportunity to partake. It can indeed be somewhat scary at first, but again, assuming you're comfortable in the water, it can rather quickly become incredibly relaxing and fun. Being underwater, even at shallow depths, and yet still being able to breathe, is such a weird and unique feeling that I think everyone should get to experience it.


I can't agree with this more! I suggest everyone try SCUBA at least once in their life.


It sure can be, especially when your lungs feel like they're going to burst and the surface appears to be minutes away. I had to dive to 53 feet for my free diving certification and it's very dark down there (seemingly more so than when you have tanks on your back:).

For anyone free diving at that depth, I'd encourage you to ensure there's always someone nearby that is capable of rescuing you.

Shallow/deep water blackout[1] is certainly dangerous with a buddy, but it's deadly if you're alone.

[1] http://divewise.org/science/physiological-causes-of-freedive...


My fear going down farther than about ten feet is how long it takes to reach the surface. 30 feet is a long way underwater.

Rescue is related. I doubt anyone could pull somebody out that's passed out at that depth. You're just not going to have enough air. I had to help someone out of a pool once and the only way I was able to manage was by walking along the bottom with them on my shoulders to shallower area. They panicked and tried to climb me, pulling me under if I did anything else


Getting certified (at least for the association I use) requires that you are able to demonstrate rescuing an unconscious diver at the appropriate depth (after identifying their blackout).

Well done helping that person. Rescuing a free diving blackout has the benefit (for the rescuer) of an unconscious victim.


The pressure on my head hurts at the bottom of a 10 ft pool. I don't know how divers do it...


You have to equalize your ears and sinuses. You're feeling pain because airspaces are getting crushed without equalizing pressure.


by pinching your nose and blowing you can equalize the pressure in your ears.[1]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valsalva_maneuver


I'm not sure if this is normal but I have voluntary control over my eustachian tubes. Opening them makes a small click that's audible to others if they put their ears up against mine :)


22 feet is within the limit of controlled emergency swimming ascent, and this somewhat possible to reach the surface with a single breath even if Madsen escaped from the sub when it was at the bottom.


> they let uncertified divers scuba at.

Who is "they"? There is not some scuba sheriff who magically appears and stops you from going as deep as you want. Get some gear, swim out, and dive. How deep you go is 100% up to you.

Also, dive computers make the whole thing very safe by tracking exactly how long and how deep you can stay without needing any lengthy nitrogen releasing safety stops. As a recreational diver with a bit of experience, you can feel very confident going down to 160 feet (maybe even 200?) as long as you listen to your dive computer.


You can't rent tanks or get your own tanks filled without some sort of certification.


You can, however, buy your own compressor.

They're not cheap, but they're also not all that expensive.


You just need a PADI Open Water certification or equivalent to rent tanks or get air fills. You don't need to be some fancy technical cave diver. The most basic license will suffice.


Those who have that certification are not "uncertified divers".


You aren't supposed to be able to dive at all without a certification. So the term "uncertified divers" makes zero sense.

So, if you're "uncertified" and you somehow managed to get yourself a filled air tank, then my point still stands: you can go down to however deep you want.

And the basic open water certification is not much more than a rubber stamp. Anyone can get it as long as they pay their $100 to PADI or whoever else.


How do you think people go about getting a certification? Uncertified people have to be able to dive with an instructor or there would be a chicken and egg problem becoming certified.


That's ignoring nitrogen narcosis and other very dangerous concerns...


It's not ignoring it at all. Your dive computer tells you exactly how long you can stay at your current depth with no problems ("no decompression time").

You can see tables of the no decompression time: http://elearning.padi.com/company0/tools/RDP_Table%20Met.pdf

The calculations are quite confusing do to manually, but your computer does them great, and in realtime, and for your exact depth & time. So, like I said, as long as you follow your computer, the risk for nitrogen narcosis or any other problems is very very small.


You are confusing nitrogen narcosis with the bends.


You're right, I apologize.

But I still argue the point: the depths that you will suffer seriously from nitrogen narcosis are beyond how deep you could even go on 1 tank + no decompression time.

Once you get to 160 ft you only have a few minutes at that depth, so realistically you couldn't even go deep enough where nitrogen narcosis would be a big problem.

So I still stand by my statement: if you have only 1 tank, and follow your dive computer's guidance, your risk of anything bad happening to you on a dive is slim to none.


"And follow your computer's guidance" is the key part. Hard to be sure you'll do that when N2 drunk ;)


From the police report:

> In the afternoon there have been divers on the submarine, lying on seven feet of water. It has not been possible to enter the submarine, either being stabilized on site or rescued and towed to port before it will be possible. This will probably happen during Saturday.

They will attempt to either enter the sub on site or tow it back to port today (Saturday).

http://www.mynewsdesk.com/dk/koebenhavns-politi/pressrelease...


I posted this yesterday when the news first broke (https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=14993089), it looks quite bad, what are the chances of the journalist going missing within the same 24 hours of the sub sinking in front of a bunch of witnesses after the guy goes back down to reappear just as it sinks. Subs are after all made to sink, it should be pretty easy for the designer/builder of the sub to make it sink on command, the hatch being open will do the rest.

At a guess they won't find the journalist inside, Madsen is way too smart to not realize that the sub was sinking in shallow water and would be lifted promptly, but in spite of that I don't have much hope of her still being alive.

It's a real pity, Copenhagen Space Orbitals and Madsen as a person were quite the inspiration source for many and to see it end like this is harsh. Reminds me of the Reiser case, it took a while for the truth to come out there too.


I might be too innocent but: why would he kill the journalist? Is it normal for people to go from completely peaceful individuals with no issues to directly killing a person on a submarine? Does he have precedents?


The scenarios coming to mind as most probable are:

1. She dies in some kind of accident. He panics thinking that police will not believe him it was an accident and tries to cover it up.

2. Sexual advance gone wrong.


> Madsen is way too smart to not realize that the sub was sinking in shallow water

If that's really a crime, it looked improvised and panicked to me, not thought out at all.


To me it looks like the coverup of a crime. Anyway, it's all speculation at this point.


If he claimed that he dropped her off at the restaurant, why would he even bother sinking the sub?


At a guess because he didn't? If there is anything that would prove a crime he might hope submerging the boat would erase the evidence. It's all way too reminiscent of Hans Reiser trying to erase evidence of murder and pretending he was smarter than the investigators. That did not end well.


There is not clear purpose in sinking it deliberately with the woman inside in front of a lot of people and say that she was not here. Bones will remain and everybody knows where is the sunken sub. Lets suppose instead that there was (hypothetically) a lot of blood in the sub. To what extent would the evidence be erased in salt water? could you find blood remains in sea lice/other invertebrate's guts or in trapped water bags?

Going further in the idea, could the researchs analyze the biocenosis of animals trapped inside the sub in search of an anormal number of species of animals atracted by corpses? If there was blood or organic remains or a missing/hidden corpse a lot of scavengers will detect it from Km and came in a hurry.


How about electronic evidence? The previous locations of the sub for instance, indicating where a body may have been dumped. There are many kinds of evidence.


It would be circumstancial evidence only. Unless you find a body, traveling to the points X, Y and Z is not a proof of murder. And even if you find it, another person could have done this to incriminate this man or for unknown motives. We don't know if the journalist had enemies.

Of course such info would be really useful to start a searching but a dumped body can move with the sea currents so if is found in point X could have been dumped (or drowned accidentally) in the point W in fact.


Speculation, but flooding it with seawater could wash away things like blood that seeped into various nooks and crannies.

Or destroy electronics or other evidence that might show where the sub has been. Wikipedia says the sub has video cameras that function as a periscope, for example. No idea what other electronics might be on board.


Actually, there are two amateur spacelaunch projects working out of Copenhagen - both of them because of Peter Madsen. Copenhagen Suborbitals was his original setup, from which he was ousted several years ago, reportedly after repeated clashes of opinion and personality (Madsen is known to have a temper which occasionally flares out of proportion).

Copenhagen Suborbitals and Madsen's new venture, Madsen Spacelab, were set to perform test launches in the Baltic later this month - both having been assigned the same area and different timeslots on the same day. The sub was planned to sail towards the site - based off the island of Bornholm - this weekend. It is now probably safe to assume that only the Suborbitals launch will be going forward.


There's a fascinating documentary about Copenhagen Suborbitals. Amateurs in space. Trailer here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZlltBkq4vs

I highly recommend watching it, if you ever get a chance.

Director was following both Peter and Kristian (initial founders) hoping it will be a comedy as in two guys trying to build a manned rocket.

But then project grew and grew and became viable but the whole thing and documentary itself turned into a drama showing their fallout. Now with this news story there's another crime/thriller angle to it.


Also interesting is this submarine's home page. It used to be owned by an association of enthusiasts headed by Madsen, by earlier this year there was a prolonged conflict regarding ownership which led to everyone else surrendering their claims and transferring complete ownership to Madsen. The difficulties look similar...


Their page says 2015, not 2017. I assume you are talking about http://www.uc3nautilus.dk.


Someone I follow on Twitter [0] had tweeted about their missing colleague, journalist Kim Wall, and I assumed it was connected to the this case. But I didn't know that none of the current news reports had her name. I assume that's a policy of the Danish police but it seems like that information could aid the search for a missing person.

[0] https://mobile.twitter.com/Charress/status/89613387205167104...


Her family has confirmed it is her that is missing. (Swedish source: http://www.aftonbladet.se/nyheter/a/nqdMn/journalisten-kim-w...)


Story, including a picture of her on the sub. http://ekstrabladet.dk/112/kim-isabel-forsvundet-i-ubaadsdra...


Her name and face are all over Danish facebook.



Update: They are finally trying to breach in.


- Looks like some guys are lowering the business end of a submersible trash pump into the conning tower. There's a flat hose attached, but it hasn't filled yet.

- Flat hose just became round, so they're pumping out the sub. All this is happening leisurely; looks like they're trying to do this with minimum damage.

- This is just some of the port crew and a crew from a heavy crane company preparing to move the thing. No emergency crews. They put the sub on a truck, using a huge dockside crane, and towed it away. Any investigation has already taken place or will be done elsewhere.



Very sad if it turns out that he actually killed the woman. Peter Madsen is an unofficial national hero.


This sounds a bit suspicious, but I can't imagine what motive Masden would have for killing a journalist.


I think the headlines are a bit sensationalised. I can't imagine he directly killed her either; it's probably more likely he paniced when it started to sink and fled, shortly realised afterwards that he had a passenger, and tried to cover it up. I'm not saying he's innocent, but people in states of panic can do very irrational things.


This story reminds me of Ted Kennedy [1], who somehow got off scot free after a similar incident.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chappaquiddick_incident


The woman was reported missing to the police early morning when she didn't come home/was heard from the night before, so she was reported missing hours before the sub sank.


Police are asking if witnesses saw her after 16:00. The submarine set sail 3hrs later around 19:00. It sank the next day at 11:00.

That means she was probably last seen or heard from that afternoon a few hours before the sub launched.


There's an image floating about of her in the sub with Peter, so there's no doubt that she's been on the sub.

Edit: Here: http://ekstrabladet.dk/112/kim-isabel-forsvundet-i-ubaadsdra...


He's charged with involuntary manslaughter[1].

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Madsen_(inventor)


More information is out now. There was no body on the sub, and Madsen has changed his story about dropping her off[1]. The timeline[2] makes it odd that she would have been on the sub that long...she wasn't intending on a long overnight trip.

Also, the eyewitness accounts of the sinking make it sound like the sinking was deliberate:

"Kristian Isbak, who had responded to the Navy's call to help locate the ship on Friday, told The Associated Press he first spotted Madsen standing wearing his trademark military fatigues in the submarine's tower while it was still afloat. "He then climbed down inside the submarine and there was then some kind of air flow coming up and the submarine started to sink," Isbak said. "(He) came up again and stayed in the tower until water came into it" before swimming to a nearby boat as the submarine sank, he added." [3]

[1] https://www.reuters.com/article/us-denmark-submarine-idUSKBN...

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15000076

[3] http://time.com/4898129/submarine-owner-detained-over-journa...


I'm pretty good at coming up with scenarios where he would have plenty of motive for killing her. This whole thing stinks, but any kind of limiting of the universe of possibilities will have to wait for evidence, which the sinking of the sub certainly didn't help preserve.


I don't really know anything about the people involved. What could be a motive?


No motive. Just an escalating situation. Madsen is known for his flaring temper. Speculation has plenty to feed on.


We don't know so anything would be unfounded speculation at this point.


No one so far has mentioned the interesting idea that he was trying to disappear himself. Check into who picked him up and why they were there, plus the dude's financial situation, has all of the money recently disappeared?

His girlfriend disappears in a normal manner, well, normal for a disappearance, he disappears in outlandish style in a sub sinking, he was going to swim to a pre-prepped dinghy or some quiet boat anchored nearby and disappear from history (perhaps with a pile of money?) but whoopsie a passing boater not part of the plan at all, coincidentally saw him and "helped" him out by declaring an emergency and fishing him out... So much for that tragic disappearance and drowning and missing body.

Now she's disappeared successfully on some tropical island retired wondering when he's gonna get there, or wondering if she should keep all the money (assuming any has disappeared at all, of course) or if she should come forward.

The whole thing sounding like a hollywood movie plot means my speculation sounding like a movie plot isn't necessarily disqualifying.

Its also worth pointing out that this is a "submarine story" only in the sense that the Reiser murder trial was about linux filesystem development.


No one has mentioned it because you are just making it up. Why you think the journalist was his girlfriend btw?


That does seem like a reach.

There is a photo floating around that might be Kim Wall in the tower of the submarine o̶n̶ ̶F̶r̶i̶d̶a̶y̶,̶ ̶d̶u̶r̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶d̶a̶y̶l̶i̶g̶h̶t̶ ̶h̶o̶u̶r̶s̶.̶.̶.̶w̶h̶i̶c̶h̶ ̶w̶o̶u̶l̶d̶ ̶b̶e̶ ̶o̶d̶d̶.̶[1,2] That doesn't imply girlfriend though. Could also be that the "Friday" was a mistake and the picture is from Thursday.

[1] https://www.reuters.com/article/us-denmark-submarine-idUSKBN...

[2] http://www.skd.se/2017/08/12/madsen-nekas-forklara-sig-infor...

Edit: Photo was from Thursday, not Friday. Apparently the Reuters caption is wrong. http://www.zoox.se/submarine-inventor-charged-with-murder-of...


Her boyfriend reported her missing.


I am not the original poster that said anything about boyfriends. In fact, I disagreed with the notion.


Could have been anything, including "not murder". Maybe, for example, an accidental death that Masden felt might not look accidental. All the way up to more nefarious motives.

The FBI has some data on circumstances/motives here: https://ucr.fbi.gov/crime-in-the-u.s/2010/crime-in-the-u.s.-... You can pretty quickly find a few that might be plausible.


Does he have a "Captain Nemo" complex? Would allow for all kinds of fantastical plots.


I guess since the sub was only 40GT (gross tonnage) it didn't have an Automatic Identification System (AIS) on it only ships over 300GT require an AIS.

Even if it did I wonder if an AIS operates separate from the ship's radio system.

You can track ships by their AIS and some website sell historical data to show where a ship has been.

https://www.marinetraffic.com/en/ais/home/centerx:10.2/cente...


Fuck.

Copenhaguen Suborbitals was a fantastic item to talk about to convince people that hobbyists can do great things. Now there will be a crime investigation linked to it? Damn.

That feels like when I read about Pistorius crime...


CS and Peter Madsen split up ages ago, and have been working on separate rockets ever since. So no, this isn't in any way related to Copenhagen Suborbitals.


Just because you're innocent doesn't mean you won't get dragged into the mud when somebody else does something dumb.


Still, if one of the founder of my hackerspaces used our flagship project to cover a crime, I would expect some flak.

Such a reputation dip has a broad splash zone.


Isn't this the same guy who want's to launch private/amateur suborbital flights with human passengers?


Yes. With himself as the first passenger.


This is one of the weirdest news stories lately.


There are almost 2000 nazis holding a protest in Virginia as we speak. The president threatened a nuclear first strike last week, then figured he's threaten a "military option" against Venezuela (Venezuela!?) yesterday just for kicks.

This bit of weird comic relief doesn't even make the top ten, sorry.


Multiple US diplomats being sent home from Cuba with unexplained hearing loss...


And yet a woman is, perhaps, dead. Hardly comic relief.


All of those are now routine, though. This is weird.


>There are almost 2000 nazis holding a protest in Virginia as we speak

Said nazis actually murdered one protestor and injured multiple others by mowing them down with cars. What happened there is bordering on insanity... and Trump didn't even try to distance himself from the nazis who voted him in in the first place.



That's a link from almost a year ago. The complaint yesterday was that Trump engaged in a series of "bothsidesism" tweets condemning the violence but not the racism. He kept going back to the well over the day because he'd forgotten stuff (e.g. he talked about the dead cops in the helicopter crash but not the dead woman killed by the driver) without actually addressing the root cause. And one of his comments had a bleedingly obvious dog whistle ("we should cherish our heritiage" or the like) which called out his support for the white nationalists (and yes, they got this message: multiple posts on e.g. stormfront celebrated this).


I'm glad he did. I don't know if he has come out with a new statement but the fact that he had disavowed them before makes his less than total condemnation of them now all the more baffling. There definitely is violence on both sides but I never thought Trump would be the one to equivocate on terrorism


Did leftists distance themselves from the shooter of Scalise and others two months ago? That was a literal targeted assassination attempt of a USG official.


There is a massive difference between mowing down innocent people and assassinations on politicians. The latter have bodyguards for exactly that reason, and that's why assassinating a politician is, well, an assassination, and what that 20-year-old Nazi did yesterday is an act of domestic, right-wing terrorism.

(for the record, I personally do not like assassinations)


All my elected representatives were strictly against it. Maybe some pundits didn't but they make their money by being sensational


Extremely weird. If he killed her, then why would he sail around for an additional 12 hours only then plan to sink the sub on low depth. Of cause it's equally weird to drop of the journalist, only for her to go missing and then happen to be in distress, as everyone suspects due to the journalist being missing.


I wonder how many of these islands have a mooring suitable for a submarine? Can you just park this thing up and climb off? Seems implausible to me.

I can't help but think the worst. It seems like something bad happened to this woman at some point at his hands and without a good plan he waited until he had no other option and then sank the sub to cover his tracks.

Truly the weirdest story for a while.


Any object that floats presumably may be moored at any sufficiently large dock?


That's my point. This island that he dropped her off at - does it have a dock?


Yes it does.


> "These islands"

Everything has taken place within or very close to Copenhagen harbour facilities.


He said he'd dropped her off at an island though right?


He allegedly dropped her off right around the corner from the sub's dock. It is technically an island, but it is right in (and part of) the Copenhagen harbour.

That makes the story all the more strange - they ride around for a few hours (19:00-23:00), then he drops her off back at the sub's dock, and then he sets out again and cruises around all night alone, next being seen some 40 miles away, at which point the sub promptly sinks.


Difficult not to conclude he was trying to make it look strange.


IANAL: How culpable are the authorities for certifying this craft, ie, reviewing engineering designs, inspections during build and post-build verifying control systems' fail-safes functionality, for passengers?


I hate "is suspected" -- without saying who suspects. It's a weird kind of programming, expecting readers to trust the authority of the publication without all of the facts.


It is explained in the first paragraph. You can't expect the headline to have every detail.


"amateur-built sub". It was always going to end in tears...


Another hypothetical explanation could be the woman boycotting the sub and them fleeing the area

> he said that he had dropped the woman off Thursday evening near where they had departed from, around 10:30pm. But no one had been able to reach the woman or establish her whereabouts.

I said nothing, them. Different situation.


What a good way to sabotage a project. Not only destroy the product but also the reputation of the owner.

Why did the journalist lie about writing for Wired again?

Could it be someone other than the journalist who got onboard with Madsen? How would we verify?

Could we determine that the tank failure was not a sabotage?

Is it possible we eventually find the body of journalist neither in the ocean nor in the submarine?


>Why did the journalist lie about writing for Wired again?

She probably didn't lie. She's a freelance writer that has written for many notable publications.

Many freelancers write "on spec", meaning they intend to submit it somewhere, but don't have a contract to do the work. So "writing a story for wired" wouldn't be an odd thing to say if that's who you intended to push it to.


Why would anyone sabotage the sub? there isn't a single party that would gain anything from this, last time I've checked there isn't some syndicate of submarine manufacturers that is threatened by some danish guy with a 60 foot sub.




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