Conviction of terror suspects in Norway uncertain / News / The Foreigner

Conviction of terror suspects in Norway uncertain. The three suspected terrorists arrested yesterday could walk free. Seven people have been indicted since the amended Norwegian anti-terror law was introduced in 2003. None have been convicted. “I don’t know the specifics of this particular case, but judging from the statistics, I wouldn’t be surprised if they weren’t convicted,” Criminal lawyer Morten Furuholmen tells The Foreigner. Section 147, commonly known as the anti-terror paragraph, was originally introduced in 1902. Amended in early 2000, and once again in 2008, it prohibits planning, preparing, or financing terrorist acts.

terrorists, oslo, bombing, norway, al-qaida, manchester, new, york, times, square, grand, central, station, morten, furuholmen, janne, kristiansen, pst, police, security, service, najibullah, zazi



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Conviction of terror suspects in Norway uncertain

Published on Friday, 9th July, 2010 at 12:02 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 10th July 2010 at 07:59.

The three suspected terrorists arrested yesterday could walk free. Seven people have been indicted since the amended Norwegian anti-terror law was introduced in 2003. None have been convicted.

Norwegian Supreme Court, Oslo
Norwegian Supreme Court, Oslo
Photo: Bjoertvedt/Wikimedia Commons


Vague

“I don’t know the specifics of this particular case, but judging from the statistics, I wouldn’t be surprised if they weren’t convicted,” Criminal lawyer Morten Furuholmen tells The Foreigner.

Section 147, commonly known as the anti-terror paragraph, was originally introduced in 1902. Amended in early 2000, and once again in 2008, it prohibits planning, preparing, or financing terrorist acts.

It also covers criminal offences such as severely disrupting vital public services, such as food and water, as well as serious intimidation of the population.

2008’s revision also makes terrorist recruiting and training illegal, as well as public incitement to commit acts of terror.

Furuholmen goes on to say although it seems the authorities have done a good job in the case of, both police and the courts are still trying to establish the guidelines.

“It’s a difficult paragraph. Though it’s a preventative one, it’s a new area, and the paragraph itself isn’t very specific.”

Pressure

Yesterday, Janne Kristiansen, head of the PST (Police Security Service), expressed concerns over having to arrest them earlier than planned, since they were told the story would be broken this week.

Associated Press (AP) denies this, however. Matt Apuzzo, one of its reporters in Washington, says they’d already agreed to an embargo with US and Norwegian police on publishing information until the arrests had been made.

“It’s not true we “pressured” the Norwegian authorities to apprehend them before they’d completed their investigations,” he tells VG.

Snitched

It’s believed the suspected terrorists’ plot to commit an attack, using portable bombs, either on Norwegian soil or internationally, was revealed by FBI-witness Najibullah Zazi.

Zazi, originally from Afghanistan, was arrested last year in connection with conspiring to commit a suicide bombing of New York’s Grand Central and Times Square subway stations on the eighth anniversary of 9/11.

It’s believed the planned attack was also linked to a wider al-Qaida plan to bomb a shopping centre in Manchester.

Evidence

Meanwhile, several experts have also highlighted yesterday’s early arrest could be problematic for authorities.

“They may have surveillance material that shows [the three] were talking about their intentions, and discussing methods, but they might not have taken actual steps to get explosives, weapons, or such things that will lead to a conviction,” Tore Bjørgo at the Norwegian Police University College (Politihøgskolen) in Oslo tells NRK.

District Attorney Jan Glent believes the early indictment makes the burden of proof even heavier.

“It wasn’t optimal. We can’t exclude this has had an impact on the investigation,” he says.




Published on Friday, 9th July, 2010 at 12:02 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 10th July 2010 at 07:59.

This post has the following tags: terrorists, oslo, bombing, norway, al-qaida, manchester, new, york, times, square, grand, central, station, morten, furuholmen, janne, kristiansen, pst, police, security, service, najibullah, zazi.





  
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