Cleared contractor sues for damages

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Harald Langemyhr, a building contractor recently acquitted on charges of defrauding the City of Oslo and the state on nursing home construction projects, now says he plans to sue the city and state for more than NOK 200 million. He claims the public sector must compensate him for losses he’s suffered as a result of the fraud suit against him.

Langemyhr, age 47, told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv (DN) that he’d been subjected to a “nightmare” when authorities raided his home and business in 2008, shut down his construction projects and jailed him for five weeks while police conducted their investigation. He then felt forced to work full-time in the four years since to clear his name. He was indicted in 2010 on fraud charges, including overbilling for work done at a nursing home in Oslo’s Økern district.

He was eventually convicted on various charges of exploiting Polish workers and violations of accounting and tax regulations. He was recently acquitted, though, on charges he had defrauded the city and state for an amount of more than NOK 22 million.

The court harshly criticized the police investigation and the prosecutor’s case, citing lack of evidence and weak allegations. Prosecutors announced earlier this week that they did not intend to appeal his acquittal.

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