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DB Cooper identity investigator says 'answers are right there' after FBI court case

DB Cooper identity investigator says 'answers are right there' after FBI court case

The DB Cooper mystery could finally be solved

The identity of the plane hijacker known as DB Cooper could finally be revealed, with the case's leading investigator saying the 'answers are right there' following a court case he lost against the FBI.

Eric Ulis has been studying the case for more than a decade, uncovering new evidence and even naming a person of interest.

Now, he thinks the case could change - and fast.

DB Cooper - which goes without saying is not his real name but a moniker given to him by the media - became infamous worldwide after hijacking Northwest Orient Airlines Flight 305 in the United States on 24 November, 1971.

The hijacker claimed to be carrying a bomb, demanding $200,000 (£157,000) in ransom.

Cooper secured the cash - worth a modern day $1.5 million (£1.18 million) - before donning a parachute and jumping from the Boeing 727.

Only one clue pointing to his identity was left behind at the scene; a tie from the US retail chain JCPenney.

Now, Ulis is determined that the case will finally be solved some 53 years later thanks to said tie.

Eric Ulis has been studying the case for more than a decade.
NewsNation

Ulis said that he has met with scientist Tom Kaye, who provided him a DNA sample from the object. Kaye analysed the tie twice; once in 2009 and again in 2011.

Speaking to NewsNation, Ulis said: "The tie was one of the items DB Cooper left behind on the jet which was retrieved by the authorities.

"Now in 1971 it was of little investigative value but in later years it has of enormous value because we've been able to apply current science and technology to the tie.

"Specifically, scanning electron microscopes and DNA analysis. There are particles pulled from the tie that are unique and rare and point to the aerospace sector."

Ever since he disappeared in 1971, people have wondered exactly who DB Cooper was.
FBI

Ulis revealed that last year he had failed in an attempt to sue the FBI over the tie, with the security service possessing the object and unwilling to grant access to it.

He said: "There's a very specific part of the tie - a metal spindle that's part of the clip on tie - and I'm determined there may be an uncontaminated profile for DB Cooper within this spindle that's well protected.

"Last month a judge ruled the FBI cannot be compelled to turn over the tie for me to analyse.

"So it's been a matter of some frustration because I think the answers to solving this riddle are right there, in the possession of the FBI."

An FBI wanted poster for DB Cooper.
FBI

Ulis and Kaye will now share the DNA from Kaye's samples with a lab that specialises in what is called metagenomic DNA analysis.

This is a complex and advanced type of DNA analysis that gives scientists the ability to separate individual strands of DNA.

If all goes well, Ulis is hopeful that this case could be closed by the end of the year.

Featured Image Credit: Newsnation/YouTube/FBI

Topics: Crime, Science, Travel, True Crime, US News, DB Cooper