Number of victims: 20+
Date of murders: 1977 - 1980
Method of murder: Poisoning
Location: Orkdal, Norway
A balding, mild mannered nursing home administrator, Arnfinn Nessett is believed to have murdered as many as 138 patients over a 20-year career, making him Norway’s deadliest serial killer.
Most of those murders were committed after Nessett took up a position as director of the Orkdal Valley Nursing Home. Soon after that appointment, there was a significant spike in the number of deaths at the clinic. Given the ages of the patients, this did not at first arouse suspicion. Then, in early 1981, a journalist received a tip-off that Nesset was ordering large quantities of curacit, a derivative of the poison used by Amazonian tribes on the tips of their arrows.
Nesset was questioned by police, but said that he’d bought the drug to poison a pack of stray dogs that had been hanging around the nursing home. Then, inexplicably, he changed his story and admitted to killing patients. Asked how many he'd murdered, he exclaimed “I’ve killed so many that I'm unable to remember them all.”
Nesset was eventually convicted of 22 murders and sentenced to 21-year years in prison, the maximum allowed by Norwegian law. He was released in 2004.