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BBC launches podcast to solve 50-year-old case

17th April 2018

BBC World Service has paired with the Norwegian state broadcaster (NRK) to produce a podcast investigating a case over half a century old. The culture of crime programmes including true-life documentaries like Netflix’s Making a Murderer are becoming increasingly popular, but this is the first time a piece of content has been created in order to help solve a historically unsolved case.

The podcast called ‘Death in Ice Valley’ focuses on the case of the Isdal Woman. A body was discovered in November 1970 in a remote spot in Norway’s Isdalen Valley but to this day her identity remains unknown. Eventually, in 1971 the case was closed. Despite having compelling evidence to argue the woman was a spy, the Norwegian police force was unable to find out her true identity.

Reopening the case

With modern day DNA analysis and forensic identification, the case has been reopened after scientists and doctors have examined post-mortem and dental records,

NRK has been investigating and publishing stories about the Isdal Woman for two years now, and last year the BBC World Service published an article summarising its findings. The article gained a lot of interest from readers and the idea of the podcast was born from there.

If the case is finally cracked this could lead to a new wave of possibilities where cases are re-examined in the public eye and everyday people are able to weigh in.

If you have an interest in examining the facts and cases like this, then perhaps you could look for legal recruitment to become part of the justice system.