Cryptocurrency Ransom Demanded for Wife of Norwegian Tycoon

OSLO — The wife of a wealthy Norwegian businessman has been kidnapped, and demands have been made for a hefty ransom paid in cryptocurrency, the police revealed this week, as a drama that had been playing out secretly for months burst into public view.

Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen went missing on Oct. 31 from her home near Oslo, and international police investigations and back-channel negotiations with the people believed to be her captors have so far failed to secure her release.

At news conferences on Wednesday and Thursday, the police said they had established a line of communication with people claiming to be holding Ms. Hagen, but would not elaborate. They conceded that they did not know who the captors were, or even whether Ms. Hagen, 68, was still alive.

“There are no known signs of life,” Tommy Broske, head of the police unit investigating the disappearance, said on Thursday.