Danish inventor Peter Madsen has been found guilty of murdering Swedish journalist Kim Wall, who he tortured, assaulted and dismembered after she boarded a submarine to write about him.
Madsen, 47, was convicted in a Copenhagen courtroom Wednesday of premeditated murder and sexual assault.
“Given all of the evidence, the court has concluded that Madsen is guilty of murdering Kim Wall,” Judge Anette Burko said. She added that evidence proves Madsen tied up 30-year-old Wall, according to the New York Times.
Madsen was sentenced to life in prison without parole. However, in Denmark, a life sentence is equal to 16 years, with the possibility of extensions.
Madsen’s lawyer plans to appeal the verdict.
The court dismissed claims that Wall accidentally died on Madsen’s submarine in August 2017. He had denied killing her but admitted to dismembering her body and burying it at sea.
Prosecutors said Madsen had planned to torture and kill Wall long before she boarded his submarine to interview him for a story. The headless torso of Wall washed up on a beach days later.
Madsen stated repeatedly during the trial that he didn’t kill Wall or have sexual contact with her.
During his trial, one witness said Madsen had talked about his desire to create a snuff film.
Madsen possessed psychopathic traits, and had no remorse for cutting up Kim's body, a psychiatric assessment found. Excerpts of that assessment were read to the court earlier this month.
Madsen has changed his story about Wall's death several times. He initially told authorities he had dropped her off on the coast, but later said she had died in an accident abroad his ship. Her torso was found August 21, tied to a large piece of metal to help it sink. In court, Madsen claimed he changed his story because he wanted to spare Wall’s family from hearing the gory details, according to BBC News.
Wall had written for various publications including The New York Times and The Guardian, and she planned to pitch her Madsen story to Wired magazine. She had traveled all over the world for journalistic endeavors, including North Korea. She disappeared days before she and her boyfriend would scheduled to move to Beijing.
"What made her journalistic abilities so exceptional was that she looked for quirky stories but with a bigger narrative," her former friend and classmate Anna Codrea-Rado told the BBC. "She reported them deeply - she never made a spectacle of the characters. Her reporting was rock-solid."
[Photos: Getty Images]