A 38-year-old man charged with the attempted murder of the imam of Norway’s largest mosque last month has earlier been convicted along with other members of the Young Guns gang in Oslo. On Wednesday he was ordered held in custody for at least four weeks, while police continue to investigate the case.
One of the weeks will be in full isolation, after the court granted his request that he not be held for two weeks in isolation, as prosecutors had asked. He argued in court that he earlier had suffered psychological trauma after being held in isolation.
Newspaper Dagbladet reported that the suspect, arrested on Monday, was convicted by an appeals court four years ago to 18 months in prison after being among 11 persons tied to the Young Guns gang who were charged with violence, illegal weapons possession and making threats. He also has a record of other convictions including his role in a major narcotics case in Asker.
Newspaper VG reported that police have secured photos of the 38-year-old in the area at Grønland in Oslo where the imam was attacked. He’s believed to have fled in a waiting car and police continue to search for alleged accomplices.
He has denied any involvement in the imam attack, with his defense attorney claiming he was “surprised” by the charges against him. He accepted the four-week custody term, though, to give the police time to exonerate him, according to his lawyer.