Varg Vikernes arrested in France

By | Published on Wednesday 17 July 2013

Varg Vikernes

Norwegian black metal musician and convicted murderer Kristian ‘Varg’ Vikernes (apparently now officially known as Louis Cachet, according to Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten) has been arrested in France, along with his wife Marie Cachet, on suspicion that they were planning a major terrorist attack.

Vikenes was sentenced to 21 years in prison in 1994 for the murder of Mayhem guitarist Oeystein ‘Euronymous’ Aarseth. During his prison stay, he became increasingly known for his writing, which expressed nationalist, racist and anti-Semitic views. He was released on probation in 2009 and now lives with Marie, a French national, and their three children, on a farm near the town of Salon-la-Tour, two hours north of Toulouse.

According to reports, police searched the couple’s home after Marie, who has a licence to own firearms, bought four new rifles. Authorities had initially become concerned because of postings to Vikernes’ website, on which he has long written about his extremist views. And on that site he last year claimed that he had been contacted by mass murderer Anders Breivik prior to him killing 77 people in Norway in 2011.

In that post, though espousing anti-Semitic views, Vikernes was critical of Brievik, writing that “the final solution to this problem is not to kill anyone” but rather for those who share his politics to raise their children to believe the same.

However, French Interior Minister Manuel Valls said in a statement following the arrests that Vikernes was “likely to carry out a major terrorist act [and is] a potential threat to society, as evidenced by the violence of his words intercepted in particular on his website”. Though the minister later admitted that no evidence of a “target or project” had been found during the police search.

France’s strict anti-terrorism laws, which allow police to detain people without charge, were updated last year to allow the monitoring of internet-based communications, shortly after Vikernes’ website post about Brievik was published.