Mystery galore   29/10/2012

Here’s a new one to me from the city of bizarre deaths.

The body on the beach
This mystery has it all: an unidentified body, an unknown cause of death, and a trail of clues leading… nowhere. On December 1, 1948, a man was found dead on Somerton beach, in Australia. He was in peak physical condition (apart from being dead) but police couldn’t ID him: no papers and all the labels had been removed from his clothes. At autopsy, poison was suspected but not confirmed.
A month later police discovered a brown suitcase at Adelaide Railway station that might have belonged to the mysterious Somerton Man. Its label, and those on the clothes inside, had been removed. Dead end, until June of 1949 when investigators reexamined the body and found a secret pocket in the man’s clothing, containing a scrap of paper with words on it. Publicity helped find the rare book that the page was torn from: a man found it in the back seat of his car the night before the body was found. In the book was a strange code (unbroken to this day) and a woman’s phone number. She denied knowing the dead man, ending another line of inquiry. Even now, criminologists are working to solve this twisted mystery.

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