Fifty-year-old murder mystery may have been solved by cold case podcast host

A team of amateur sleuths might have solved a cold case murder mystery that has left police stumped for nearly 50 years.

The Cold Cases podcast series host Urban Gardek and his friends have been reviewing old newspaper clippings, interviewing witnesses and have even found the original police files in relation to the disappearance of Sven Sjogren.

And they think they may have made a breakthrough.

The eccentric farmer, from the island of Gotland, in Sweden, vanished in October 1972 amid a land dispute with neighbours.

It was the island’s first missing person case in over a century.

Seven months later a friend of Mr Sjogren’s, who had been doing his own investigation, also disappeared after leaving a cryptic note.

Mr Gardek was working as a tour guide on the island a few years ago when he first heard of the case and it has fascinated him ever since.

After a decade of investigation he and his pals believe they could be on the brink of a breakthrough.

Mr Sjogren came from a wealthy industrial dynasty that was having money troubles.

The family had sold its ancestral mansion near popular tourist spot Lummelunda Cave but the farmer had a far more lucrative asset on his land, a plentiful water spring.

He had received an offer to purchase the property from another farmer who wanted to turn it into a zoo, but he refused.

However, a stranger called Bernt Larsson one day turned up out of the blue and persuaded Mr Sjogren to sign the papers.

After that he disappeared.

The Times reports Dan Horning of the podcast Unsolved Murders said: “His house looked like he had just walked out of the door and vanished.

“A glass of milk was still on the table.”

Mr Sjogren’s pal Bjorn Adolfsson later discovered his friend appeared to have been talked into selling the land in exchange for forged private pension entitlements.

Mr Adolfsson also soon vanished, leaving behind a note reading “I’m going to the lake” in his cabin on the Swedish mainland.

Police concluded it was suicide but never found a body.

In their investigations, Mr Gardek and his team have spoken to a witness who said they spotted Mr Larsson at an old landfill site the day after Mr Sjogren went missing.

They believe the mysterious stranger, who died in 2015, is the most obvious suspect and that he might have poisoned the farmer’s milk.

The sleuths have since hired a “skeleton dog” capable of sniffing out remains from up to a thousand years ago.

The dog identified traces at the dump and the team are now waiting for permission to begin digging.

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