Body found as Danish submarine man says missing woman died on board

COPENHAGEN, Aug 21 (Reuters) - A headless female torso was found on Monday in the water's edge in Copenhagen, hours after a Danish inventor charged with killing a journalist in his home-made submarine told a court she died on board, police said.

Peter Madsen told the court that Swedish journalist Kim Wall had died in an accident and he had buried her at sea, changing his earlier statement the he dropped her off alive in Copenhagen.

Police later told a press conference that it was still too early to identify the body - missing its head, legs and arms - that was found by a passing cyclist.

20 PHOTOS
Danish inventor charged with killing journalist on his submarine -- Peter Madsen and Kim Wall
See Gallery
Danish inventor charged with killing journalist on his submarine -- Peter Madsen and Kim Wall
A photo of Swedish journalist Kim Wall who was aboard a submarine "UC3 Nautilus" before it sank. TT NEWS AGENCY/ Tom Wall Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. SWEDEN OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN SWEDEN. NO COMMERCIAL SALES. MANDATORY CREDIT
Members of the Danish Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) assist police in the search in the Kim Wall case at Kalvebod Faelled in Copenhagen, Denmark, August 23, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Martin Sylvest/ via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN DENMARK.
The home-made submarine "UC3 Nautilus", built by Danish inventor Peter Madsen, who is charged with killing Swedish journalist Kim Wall in his submarine, sails in the harbour of Copenhagen, Denmark, August 10, 2017. Picture taken August 10, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Thompson
Danish submarine owner and inventor Peter Madsen lands with the help of the Danish defence in Dragor Harbor south of Copenhagen, Denmark August 11, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Bax Lindhardt/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN DENMARK.
The home-made submarine "UC3 Nautilus", built by Danish inventor Peter Madsen, who is charged with killing Swedish journalist Kim Wall in his submarine, sails in the harbour of Copenhagen, Denmark, August 10, 2017. Picture taken August 10, 2017. REUTERS/Peter Thompson
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK - AUGUST 12: A salvage vessel arrives a Copenhagen Harbor with the privately owned and built submarine, Nautilus, which sank near Copenhagen Friday morning, and where the suspected murder of Swedish journalist Kim Wall is assumed to have taken place, on August 12, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 7 metres of water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
Peter Madsen, Danish inventor, engineer, rocket- and u-boat builder, talks about entrepreneurship during Danish Business Day event held in Copenhagen, Denmark, May 9, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Ida Marie Odgaard/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT. NO COMMERCIAL OR EDITORIAL SALES IN DENMARK.
A unit of the Swedish Sea Rescue Society searches for the missing swedish journalist Kim Wall, at the Lundakra Bay between Barsebaeck and Landskrona on August 15, 2017. The Swedish journalist is missing after a trip with Danish inventor Peder Madsen's DIY submarine Nautilus in Oresund. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Johan NILSSON / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read JOHAN NILSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK -AUGUST 13: The privately owned submarine, Nautilus, which is the suspected crime scene for the assumed murder on Swedish journalist Kim Wall, arrives to it's destination where further forensic police investigation wil take place near Copenhagen harbor on August 13, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 8 meters water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK -AUGUST 13: Police begin their forensic investigation work on the privately owned submarine, Nautilus, which is the suspected crime scene for the assumed murder on Swedish journalist Kim Wall on August 13, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 8 meters water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
Danish submarine owner and inventor Peter Madsen lands with the help of the Danish defence in Dragor Harbor south of Copenhagen, Denmark August 11, 2017. Picture taken August 11, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Bax Lindhardt/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT.
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK -AUGUST 13: The privately owned submarine, Nautilus, which is the suspected crime scene for the assumed murder on Swedish journalist Kim Wall, is carried out of Copenhagen harbor on a truck for further forensic police investigation taking place near the harbor on August 13, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 8 meters water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK -AUGUST 13: The privately owned submarine, Nautilus, which is the suspected crime scene for the assumed murder on Swedish journalist Kim Wall, is carried out of Copenhagen harbor on a truck for further forensic police investigation taking place near the harbor on August 13, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 8 meters water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
COPENHAGEN, DENMARK -AUGUST 13: The privately owned submarine, Nautilus, which is the suspected crime scene for the assumed murder on Swedish journalist Kim Wall, arrives to it's destination where further forensic police investigation wil take place near Copenhagen harbor on August 13, 2017 in Copenhagen, Denmark. The submarine sailed out of Copenhagen harbor Thursday evening with owner Peter Madsen and Kim Wall onboard. Later the submarine sank in 8 meters water. Peter Madsen was safely rescued but the Swedish journalist was missing and Madsen was subsequently arrested by the police and charged for murder. Madsen claimed that the woman was put ashore before the submarine sank. Madsen appeared for a preliminary examination at the Copenhagen Court Saturday afternoon. Police are now to investigate the submarine, which is built by Madsen himself. The Swedish journalist is still being searched for by the police. Her identity was released Saturday by her family to Danish broadcaster TV2.(Photo by Ole Jensen - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
A unit of the Swedish Sea Rescue Society searches for the missing swedish journalist, Kim Wall, at the Lundakra Bay, between Barsebaeck and Landskrona, on August 15, 2017. The Swedish journalist is missing after a trip with Danish inventor Peder Madsen's DIY submarine Nautilus in Oresund. / AFP PHOTO / TT News Agency / Johan NILSSON / Sweden OUT (Photo credit should read JOHAN NILSSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Members of the Danish Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) (Danish: Beredskabsstyrelsen) assist police at Kalvebod Faelled in search of missing body parts of journalist Kim Wall close to the site where her torso was found, in Copenhagen, Denmark, August 23, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Martin Sylvest/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT.
Members of the Danish Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) (Danish: Beredskabsstyrelsen) assist police at Kalvebod Faelled in Copenhagen on August 23 2017 in search of missing bodyparts of journalist Kim Wall close to the site where her torso was found on Monday, August 21. Scanpix Denmark/Martin Sylvest/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT.
Members of the Danish Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) (Danish: Beredskabsstyrelsen) assist police at Kalvebod Faelled in search of missing body parts of journalist Kim Wall close to the site where her torso was found, in Copenhagen, Denmark, August 23, 2017. Scanpix Denmark/Martin Sylvest/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT.
Members of the Danish Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) (Danish: Beredskabsstyrelsen) assist police at Kalvebod Faelled in Copenhagen on August 23 2017 in search of missing bodyparts of journalist Kim Wall close to the site where her torso was found on Monday, August 21. Scanpix Denmark/Martin Sylvest/via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. DENMARK OUT.
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

"It is clear that the police, like the media and everybody else, is speculating whether this female body is Kim Wall, but it is way too soon to tell," Copenhagen police spokesman Jens Moller said.

The case is being followed particularly closely by Danish and Swedish media but has drawn interest from around the world.

The body had been sent for forensic analysis while divers continued to search the area where it was found, Moller said.

Madsen has been charged with the manslaughter of Wall who has been missing since he took her out to sea in his 17-meter submarine on Aug. 10. He denies the charge.

He was rescued a day later after his UC3 Nautilus sank. Police found nobody else in the wreck.

Danish and Swedish maritime authorities are using divers, sonar and helicopters in the continued search for the body in Koge Bay, south of the city, and in the Oresund Strait between the two countries.

Madsen, an entrepreneur, artist, submarine builder and aerospace engineer, went before a judge on Saturday for preliminary questioning. The case is not open to the public to protect further investigation, police said.

(Reporting by Teis Jensen and Stine Jacobsen; Editing by Toby Chopra)

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.