Assassin in Svanstrand

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This story, like most, is an amalgam of truth and fiction. Names, characters, places, associations, and incidents are products of the author’s imagination. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, organizations, places, or incidents other than historic is entirely unintentional.

Our decisions and actions are driven primarily by particular motivations. Those with similar incentives are often drawn to each other. This story is about those who are determined to get rich whatever it takes and they will lie, blackmail, threaten, thieve or murder to achieve their ends regardless of the cost.



This is a fictional detective story about the unethical conduct of clinical trials and insider trading based on the trial results.

The story takes place in Svanstrand, a small Swedish fishing village, a summer holiday paradise for people escaping from the city. A murder occurs in October and subsequent killings during a heavy Christmas snowstorm that paralyses infrastructures in Svanstrand, Österlen and Skane.

Markus Swan and his wife Karin have recently renovated their summer house in Svanstrand on their return from Hong Kong, and are planning a traditional family Christmas there. Markus visited Svanstrand in October and witnessed two people fighting at the end of the old concrete pier.


Swedish Centralized Homicide Investigative Bureau

Karl Axel Sandel (Kacka) is the temporary head of a new criminal police unit in Stockholm, the Swedish Centralized Homicide Investigative Bureau (SCHIB), which holds information on all murder cases in Sweden. Kacka is an intelligent middle-aged bachelor. Madelene Trolle (Made) is his appealing assistant and a former rally driver. Made is rather in love with Kacka, but two barriers separate them.

The story revolves around a murderer nicknamed the Fox. The first two Fox hunts cause embarrassment not just for Kacka and his team but also for the police force in general. The third Fox hunt takes place a few minutes prior to midnight at a large New Year’s Eve party. The Fox is netted and neutralized. The scale and motives for his/her criminal activities are revealed.



 How it came about

In 2012 I had a few months free between two works, so I wrote this detective story. The main theme is insider trading in clinical trial results, poor manufacturing practice, and research fraud. It could thus serve as a base for discussing such issues and how they can be detected and avoided.

The story takes place in and around a small fishing village 30 km East of Ystad in the South of Sweden, i.e. in the town where Inspector Kurt Wallander is living and working.

This part of Sweden is known as the Swedish Provence with light blue sky, much farming and fishing, and many tourists, especially during the summer. However, the winter can be rough as described in this detective book.

With warmest regards

Johan Karlberg


“Be careful what you say ..... you might end up in my next book.”
Michele Lynn Seigfried

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