Newspaper clippings · Sweden

The first piece of a dismembered woman, whose death and investigation inspired The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, found

July 18, 1984
Solna, Sweden
The first body parts of Catrine da Costa, a prostitute in Stockholm, are found in a plastic bag

Various pieces of da Costa’s body were found between July 18 and August 8, but her head, internal organs, genitals, and one breast have not been located. Due to the missing body parts, cause of death is indeterminable.

The doctor mentioned in this news article, Teet Härm, and another doctor named Thomas Allgen were suspected of the murder and dismemberment. Both were arrested and tried, though they were acquitted due to the lack of a definite cause of death. The courts did rule the doctors had dismembered da Costa’s body, but the statute of limitations had expired and neither were convicted of the charge.

The case inspired the novel and later film adaptations of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

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