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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Police crack the case of a serial rapist

Family, friends and business associates in Oppland County were in shock this week after a Norwegian man in his 40s was charged with a series of rapes and assaults and then admitted to most of them. The otherwise successful and highly educated businessman turned out to be the serial rapist police had been tracking down for 10 years.

Police, in an unusual move, released this sketch of the serial rapist in 2011, after he attacked an 18-year-old woman at Oppsal in Oslo. ILLUSTRATION: Politiet
Police, in an unusual move, released this sketch of the serial rapist in 2011, after he attacked an 18-year-old woman at Oppsal in Oslo. ILLUSTRATION: Politiet

He was arrested at his home on Saturday after years of DNA-linked investigations connected him to a sexual assault on a 13-year-old girl in Hakadal north of Oslo in 2010. He’s now also charged with the rape of a six-year-old girl at Skjetten in Romerike in September 2008, the rape of an 18-year-old woman at Oppsal on Oslo’s east side in October 2011 and a sexual assault against an eight-year-old girl in Nittedal in May of this year.

All of his victims were apparently chosen at random and he has admitted to criminal liability in three of the cases while admitting to a sexual act but not criminal liability in one of them. Police wouldn’t say which one.

More charges are pending, given a series of possibly connected rapes and assaults reported since 2004, when a group of girls out swimming at a lake at Ulsrud in Oslo’s eastern forest known as Østmarka called the police when a man masturbated in their presence. He then fled but police secured remnants at the scene of sperm and other biological matter.

When the state crime unit Kripos started working on the case with local police districts in Oslo, Romerike and Akershus they started seeing a pattern, reported newspaper Dagsavisen on Tuesday. They were sparse with details of what led them to the man in Oppland County, which borders on Akershus.

Newspaper Dagbladet reported Tuesday that the man, who in line with Norwegian press tradition is not being publicly identified, grew up on Oslo’s east side and was thus familiar with Oppsal and Østmarka. The other crime scenes lie between Oslo and his home in Oppland. Dagbladet reported that he graduated from a prestigious private university, was married with children and had been part of a start-up company that was so successful it was sold to a larger company where he still worked. His family, friends and co-workers were reported to be shocked that the apparently happy and successful man led a sinister double life. So sinister that in the case of the rape of the 18-year-old, Dagsavisen reported that he told his victim to “pretend you like it, then this will go faster.”

She was the one who provided the most solid description of the man to police three years ago. His defense attorney said his client was now “very sorry.” He was ordered held in police custody for at least the next four weeks while police continued their investigation. He was allowed no contact with the outside world. Berglund



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