Federal agents are on their way to the German town where they believe accused con man kidnapper Clark Rockefeller was born and raised as Christian Karl Gerhartsreiter, ABC News has learned.
Authorities unraveling Rockefeller's byzantine back story believe that he swooped into Southern California high society in the mid-1980s under the name of Christopher Chichester, only to leave as a person of interest in the disappearance of a newlywed couple he lived with. Before that, he apparently arrived in Connecticut from Germany for an exchange program in 1978 under the name Christian Gerhartstreiter, police sources say.
Rockefeller, who now sits in a Boston jail on charges of abducting his daughter, continues to stonewall investigators probing his foggy past.
"It has grown abundantly clear that Christopher Chichester is Christian Gerhartsreiter," said a high-ranking Boston police official with direct knowledge of the investigation. "It appears that Clark Rockefeller is also Gerhartsreiter."
A spokesman for Suffolk County District Attorney Dan Conley, who will prosecute Rockefeller on custodial kidnapping and assault charges tied to the abduction of his 7-year-old daughter, Reigh, during a supervised parental visit in Boston July 27, said that mystery man's profile is becoming increasingly clear.
"The investigation has grown more focused by the day and even by the hour,'' Jake Wark, spokesman for the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office, told ABC News.
A task force of Boston Police Department detectives, Los Angeles investigators, FBI agents, immigration officials and prosecutors are working to solidify information about Rockefeller's German heritage, which was first reported by ABC News Wednesday evening.
Since his arrest, Rockefeller had been described to ABC News as a "ghost" by one Boston police investigator, an "enigma" by an FBI special agent and a "mystery man" by Suffolk County, Mass., prosecutors. Prosecutors have not found a driver's license, Social Security number or any work or educational history for the man.
It came to light Friday morning that Rockefeller's birth brother appears to have been located in Bergen, Germany, according to separate reports published in The Boston Globe and Boston Herald.
Shown several pictures of Clark Rockefeller that have circulated since the child's alleged abduction sparked an international manhunt, a man identified as Alexander Gerhartstreiter said that he was shocked to learn that his brother had been found. Gerhartstreiter said that his brother, Christian Gerhartstreiter, was raised in the same house in Siegsdorf, Germany, where their mother continues to live today, and left for an exchange program at a Connecticut high school in 1978.
Gerhartstreiter said that before he cut off all communication with his family in 1986, his older brother told the family hat he had changed his name to Christopher Chichester, the Herald reported.
Authorities already had linked Rockefeller's fingerprints to prints on an application for a stockbroker's license with the alias Charles Chichester. The fingerprint on the stockbroker's license was also traced to German-born Christian Gerhartstreiter, law enforcement sources told ABC News earlier this week. Gerhartstreiter was born in 1961, making him about 48 years old -- the same age as Rockefeller.