130 people say they killed Olof Palme: police
Published: 21 Feb 2011 14:49 GMT+01:00
Updated: 21 Feb 2011 14:49 GMT+01:00
With the 25th anniversary of the assassination of former Swedish prime minister Olof Palme a week away, Swedish police revealed on Monday that 130 people have confessed to the killing.
- Yugoslav assassin killed Olof Palme: report (17 Jan 11)
- Olof Palme and Obamania: Swedes' love-hate relationship with the US (01 Nov 10)
- Palme assassination case to remain open (03 Feb 10)
Media interest in the still-unsolved murder has reached record levels as the 25th anniversary of the assassination approaches.
While 130 people have confessed to the murder, all have been disregarded as suspects and police continue to look into the killing, which took place on February 28th, 1986.
So far, the preliminary investigation of the Palme murder takes up 225 metres of shelf space and counting.
While in principle the preliminary inquiry can continue indefinitely following the removal of the statute of limitation on the case, Kerstin Skarp, the sixth person to lead the inquiry, gave no indication that the crime would be solved anytime soon.
"When there is absolutely nothing to work with and we have reached a dead end, then it shall be closed. But we are not there yet," she said at a Monday press conference organised by Sweden's National Bureau of Investigation (Rikskriminalen).
She added that the current search is not focussed on any particular person.
Stig Edqvist, head of the Palme Group and the fourth leader of the investigation, admitted that it is frustrating that there is still no suspect in the killing after 25 years.
"It obviously is tough to deal with from time to time," he said.
Two to three new tips are submitted every day, Edqvist added. A large portion of them are ruled out as they relate to tips that have been previously investigated.
"However, if someone comes in with information about a named person or a weapon, we are obviously interested in it," said Edqvist, who believes that a number of new tips would come in after Monday's press conference.
The preliminary investigation was estimated to have cost half a billion kronor ($77.97 million) five years ago.
Nevertheless, investigators are still hoping to find the killer.
"We can say in all honesty that we do not have a hot lead that we are following right now, nor however, is there anything else that indicates the opposite," said Skarp.
Palme was walking home from a cinema with his wife Lisbet in central Stockholm on Sveavägen close to midnight on February 28th, 1986 when he was fatally shot in the back at close range. A second shot wounded his wife, who later recovered.
Palme was rushed to hospital, but was pronounced dead on arrival at 1.06am local time the next day.
He served as Sweden's prime minister on two separate occasions, from 1969 to 1976 and 1982 to 1986.