In the late 1960s, a serial killer terrorized the area around San Francisco, California. At least five people died at his hand – according to his own statements, the mysterious killer even claims to have killed 37 people. The story was filmed in 2007, the perpetrator was never caught.
Just as unsolved as the murders was a code left by the so-called Zodiac killer. Now a team of cryptography experts is said to have deciphered this message. Years of research and the help of several computer programs were necessary to crack the code.
“Have fun trying to catch me”
As the “New York Times” writes, the FBI has since confirmed the report. The solution to the riddle was leaked to the security authorities on December 5th. But the message did not contain the hoped-for reference to the identity of the murderer. According to the cryptography team, the message the killer sent to the San Francisco Chronicle in November 1969 was more of a boast.
“I hope you have a lot of fun trying to catch me,” it says. And: “I am not afraid of the gas chamber, because it will take me all the sooner to paradise because I now have enough slaves to work for me.” He closes with: “I am not afraid because I know that my life after death in paradise will be an easy one.”
In an earlier message, which was easier to decipher, the Zodiac killer had already spoken of “slaves”, which he supposedly collected to serve him in the afterlife.
The investigation continues
The decoder team that was finally able to crack the code consists of the US web designer David Oranchak, the Australian mathematician Sam Blake and the Belgian logic expert Jarl Van Eykcke. It took her years of work to decipher the message made up of numbers and symbols. The code is also known as the “340 cipher” because it consists of 340 characters.
However, the investigation is not over. The FBI wrote in a statement: “The Zodiac killer terrorized several communities in Northern California, and even if decades have passed, we still owe the victims justice for these horrific crimes.” (bra)