Odd Nerdrum, the contemporary Norwegian artist charged and convicted of tax evasion, has lost his appeal of an audit carried out by Skatt øst, the tax authority in Oslo for southeastern Norway. He had filed a civil lawsuit over the audit, lost in the city court and now has also lost in the appeals court (Borgarting lagmannsrett).
The appeals court ruled that Nerdrum, who left Norway several years ago to live in a form of self-imposed exile first in Iceland and later in France, had kept financial accounts that were “extremely deficient.” His defense attorney Pål Berg told newspaper Dagbladet that he “got upset just reading the court’s verdict.” Nerdrum claimed Skatt Øst had taxed him much too highly between 1998 and 2012, but the court disagreed.
Nerdrum also faces more court action over the tax evasion against him. A parallel lawsuit involving Skatt øst had left him with a conviction and sentence of two years and 10 months in prison, for failing to report NOK 14 million in income from the sale of paintings. Norway’s Supreme Court ended up retracting the jail term, and news bureau NTB reported that the case will come up for trial again in May.