A 43-year-old man from Oppland County is appealing a judge’s decision late last week to sentence him to 12 years of special custody aimed at protecting the public. The man, convicted of a string of sexual assaults on children and animals, complained that his sentence is too strict.
The Norwegian custody terms known as forvaring can keep convicts in prison for life if judges believe they still pose a threat to public safety. In this case, the defendant was convicted of raping and otherwise sexually assaulting 11 girls, the youngest of whom was a baby. He also was found in possession of illegal photos and video portraying sexual assaults and was declared guilty on two counts of sex with animals.
“It’s no surprise he was found guilty,” his defense attorney Vegard Aaløkken told news burean NTB after his sentence was handed down. He said his client testifed largely in line with the claims made by plaintiffs’ attorneys, but he contested the charges and evidence on some counts, and believes his sentence is too strict.
“He doesn’t think he should be sentenced to forvaring, and that regardless, the sentence involves too many years,” Aaløkken said. The court, however, determined there was great risk that the 43-year-old would resort to sexual violence in the future. The man has claimed he doesn’t need treatment and prosecutors strongly disagree, claiming he “has committed a long string of assaults on children, he must recognize that and change his conduct. So far, he hasn’t recognized anything, even though the facts show that the man has a problem.”