JUST two years in the past, police introduced they’d lastly cracked the unsolved homicide of Swedish Prime Minister Olof Palme.
Swedes waited for six months with bated breath till the press convention, the place detectives meekly introduced they hadn’t dominated out witness Stig Engstrom.
Engstrom was a graphic designer for Skandia insurance coverage who police had initially dismissed as an consideration seeker.
However even after they introduced him again into the body, they’d no clear proof tying him to the 1986 homicide.
Chief prosecutor Krister Petersson admitted: “We now have no clear info that may put a gun within the hand of Stig Engstrom.”
“We hope that this will likely be accepted by the general public.”
PM shot lifeless
On February 28 1986, Olof Palme had dismissed his safety and brought his spouse Lizbeth out to the flicks in Stockholm.
As he left the theatre he was gunned down by a thriller man on the busy Sveavägen Road in central Stockholm.
Police initially bungled the investigation by ignoring witnesses, not placing in roadblocks and washing bullets of forensic proof.
Stig Engstrom had been essential of the police on the time of the homicide – saying he noticed the killer escape as he left his job at Skandia financial institution.
He stated: “They had been utterly uninterested the entire time.”
Now lifeless, his relations have complained to Swedish media that it couldn’t have been Engstrom.
His ex spouse Margareta advised prosecutors: “[Stig] would by no means be capable to shoot somebody as a result of he could not kill a fly.
“He didn’t have any information of the taking pictures, and would have missed if he had tried.”
The preliminary investigation was bungled with proof mishandled and police failing to dam off the crime scene.
After two years and lots of false leads, cops fingered a homeless drug addict Christer Petersson.
He had beforehand been sectioned for 2 years for manslaughter in 1970 over a killing close to to the Palme homicide website.
Regardless of no witness statements or forensic proof, Petersson was given life imprisonment for the PM’s homicide.
However a yr later the excessive courtroom acquitted him for lack of proof.
Unsurprisingly, after the 2020 announcement the Swedish public accused police of a botched investigation or cowl up.
None extra so than investigative author Jan Stocklassa, 58, from Stockholm, who had handed his piles of proof to Swedish authorities – solely to have his theories dismissed out of hand.
He had spent 13 years investigating the well-known chilly case since stumbling throughout bins of analysis on the homicide by late creator Stieg Larsson.
The 58-year-old advised The Solar: “I could not imagine my ears and eyes. Once I noticed these items [about Engstrom], I used to be utterly numb.
“After which somewhat bit later the anger got here.”
Now Sky Documentaries true crime four-parter The Man Who Performed With Hearth explores Jan’s proof and his want to have the investigation reopened.
He believes that the South African apartheid regime colluded with Swedish far proper teams to homicide fiercely anti-Apartheid and pro-ANC Olof Palme.
He stated: “I imagine he stepped on too many toes in world politics and that he provoked not solely South Africa, but in addition at the very least the Western superpowers.
“He obtained assassinated as a result of he was a thorn within the aspect of not solely South Africa, but in addition the UK and the USA, with regards to primarily the Southern African liberation.”
Initially Jan regarded into right-wing teams who had overtly criticised Olof Palme for his left-wing authorities.
On the time, these teams – together with one American group referred to as Keep Behind – had been anxious Palme would let the Soviet Union take over Sweden.
However particularly, Jan focussed on three far-right figures talked about in Stieg Larsson’s notes: Alf Enerstrom, Bertil Wedin and Victor Gunnerson.
Victor Gunnerson had been mysteriously killed in 1994 in North Carolina. Police discovered a ebook in his flat which outlined him as the primary suspect within the Palme killing.
Jan traced Bertil Wedin, a former soldier within the Congo and right-wing fanatic, to northern Cyprus, the place he confronted him over his hyperlinks to South Africa and the Palme killing.
He admitted he had labored with MI6, the CIA and apartheid superspy Craig Williamson, who gave him a month-to-month stipend.
However when Jan quizzed him on Palme he denied any involvement.
Wedin insisted: “I had no hand in any respect… I’ve by no means been requested to assist.
“They are saying there is not any smoke with out hearth however there’s nothing on this.
“It’s only a fabrication.”
One eyewitness even positioned Williamson at an anti-apartheid convention in Stockholm every week earlier than the homicide – a declare he denies.
In 2014, Jan interviewed Enerstrom, who confessed he didn’t have an alibi.
Now deceased, the person – referred to as “Sweden’s largest Palme hater” – had advised police in 1986 that he was asleep in mattress.
Jan just lately contacted his assistant, David Fredin, mysteriously referred to as Ricard or the “wig man” attributable to his ridiculous disguises.
Fredin refused to talk however Jan then obtained in touch with certainly one of his Fb mates – a really engaging woman referred to as Lida Komarkova.
After chatting on-line, Jan met Czech Lida in a bar in Prague – however she regarded nothing like her on-line footage.
Lida admitted she had created 5 pretend Fb profile to provide “a kick” in her life.
She had befriended Fredin by means of a mutual Fb group and agreed to sound him out for Jan.
Months later, Lida despatched Jan a USB filled with emails between Fredin and Wedin worriedly speaking about involvement with the Palme killing.
He stated: “Later I discovered additionally that Wedin and Fredin, they had been speaking about me as a possible KGB agent. Fredin nonetheless thinks that I am working for the KGB.
“They had been writing issues that had been really threatening to me. So once I was watching over them, they had been watching over me.”
It was additionally the primary time anybody had linked Alf Enerstrom – a person with out an alibi – and Bertil Wedin, who had been described as a “intermediary” for South Africa within the homicide.
Then Jan makes one other contact, former Swedish diplomat Goran Bjorkdahl, who had been speaking to somebody in South African army intelligence recognized solely as “Frank”.
Goran stated after Apartheid was introduced down, he was handed a army doc which described Olof as an “enemy of the state”.
The final advised him: “You want individuals on the bottom to help for a very long time.”
Goran later advised to his contact that Sweden and South Africa put ahead an amnesty for Palme’s killers to allow them to clear up the case for good.
They meet with a South African common who thought of the proposal after three conferences with the top of the military – however there had been an enormous misunderstanding.
Goran stated: “All of them appeared to imagine that I used to be on official enterprise, that I used to be representing the Swedish Authorities which I wasn’t.
“This was only a interest.”
Considering shortly, Goran began recording on his telephone.
Frank advised him: “You’re getting too near some very harmful individuals. They haven’t stopped.
“They’re nonetheless working for plenty of individuals.”
New tech, new proof, new leads
They agreed South Africa would assist Sweden clear up the case underneath the situation that no South Africans could be prosecuted as a result of “they had been underneath orders of their authorities.”
The final piped up: “The those who had been concerned, they will need safety from us as a authorities.”
After listening to the recording Jan stated: “This confirms what you and I suspected for years – there was South African involvement within the homicide.”
For the reason that police named Stig Engstrom as their man, “Frank” has urged Jan and Goran to drop their investigation.
He warned: “It’s quite simple. The South African authorities together with the Swedish authorities have agreed to drop this and no additional investigations are to be accomplished.”
Neither the South African or Swedish Governments have responded to requests for remark.
Since 2020, Jan has made additional breakthroughs within the case and desires it reopened.
He was handed a walkie talkie discovered on the scene – probably belonging to one of many murderers – and has despatched it for DNA evaluation. However he wants police involvement to check the findings.
He additionally found the prosecutor ordered bodily proof within the case to be destroyed in 2009.
He believes AI may crack the code by discovering hyperlinks within the now digitised paperwork on the case.
He stated: “You would wish the entire investigation and that the one those who obtained that entry is the police.”
The Man who performed with Hearth is out there to view on Sky Documentaries and Now from 9pm on Could 14.