Former Lawyer of BURZUM Frontman Says There Is Little Legal Basis For Arrest

Wednesday, 17th July 2013

Kristian “Varg” Vikernes’ former defense attorney says that there is very little legal basis for the BURZUM leader’s arrest in France on suspicion of planning “a large terrorist act.” Vikernes’ former lawyer John Christian Elden said the musician “has expressed extreme views on race mixing for several years, built on Norse teachings.”

Elden, who said that Vikernes has not contacted him since being detained by French police on Tuesday, stated that the musician’s arrest appears to have been carried out in part because Vikernes was one 530 supporters to have received the manifesto of Anders Breivik, the man responsible for the July 2011 bomb attack in central Oslo, Norway and shooting rampage in Utøya island that resulted in the deaths of 77 people.

In addition, Vikernes’ blogs, which include extreme expressions of opinion, and the fact that his wife had bought weapons contributed to the police’s decision to arrest the pair. “It’s less than what Norwegian Police Security Service (PST) tend to have every time they arrest Islamists in Norway and release them a short time later,” Elden stated.

French radio RTL reported yesterday that black metal musician Kristian “Varg” Vikernes, 40, had been arrested and taken to custody in France. The police suspect the Norwegian national of planning a “massacre” and have a search of his house and property under way for weapons and explosives. French police can legally detain suspects in terrorism cases for up to 96 hours before bringing preliminary charges.

His wife, Marie Cachet, a twenty-five year old French national and a member of a rifle club, had recently legally purchased four rifles. According to the French news bureau AFP, Vikernes had been under police surveillance for many years, but it was only when his wife acquired weapons that police started a formal investigation.

“This person, who has close ties to the neo-Nazi movement, poses a potential threat to society, which he has shown through his expressions on the Internet,” French Interior Minister Manuel Valls told reporters. “His wife had recently acquired four guns. The investigation will include establishing the terms of such purchases, and their real goal.”

This is not the first time Vikernes, the man behind black metal project BURZUM, has spent time behind bars. He had previously been sentenced to 21 years in prison – the maximum sentence in Norway – for the murder of Øystein Aarseth, known as Euronymous, the guitar player of black metal band MAYHEM. Vikernes had also been convicted of arson attacks on four churches, serving 16 years in prison in which he was subsequently freed in May 2009. Following his release, he moved to France with his wife and three children.

In 2011, Vikernes called for the French to vote for the National Front (FN), writing on his official web site that doing so would be the only way to avoid the scourge of mass immigration.

In the open letter, entitled “Dear France,” he said: “Your parents may induce you into a vote other than for the FN, but do not listen. They are responsible for the plight of today’s France, because they were too ignorant and too loose, or too brainwashed, to do as they should. They have already proved to the world that they have failed and betrayed France.”