A former engineer for Aker Solutions at Fornebu was sentenced on Monday to two-and-half years in prison for encouraging terrorist acts online. He was also convicted for having instructed terrorists on how to make bombs and torture prisoners, but he plans to appeal.
Prosecutor Fredrik Ranke told Norwegian Broadcasting (NRK) that he was “extremely well-satisfied” with the ruling that upheld both his team’s arguments and recommended punishment. Ranke noted that it also was the first case in Norway involving alleged terror instruction, “so this conviction is important.”
The defendant, a 51-year-old man from Iraq who earlier fought with US forces, did not deny what he had written online in an Internet forum for jihadists. He claimed, however, that he was merely trying to infiltrate the brutal terror group IS so that he could then destroy it from the inside.
“He believes he is innocent and has a good reason for what he has done,” the defendant’s attorney Brynjar Meling told NRK. “It’s clear the verdict will be appealed.”
The jail term ordered by the local court in Asker og Bærum was slightly lower than the three years requested by the prosecution but Ranke was undaunted. “We won on the basis of the legal aspects and most of the jail term sought,” Ranke said.
The 51-year-old man was arrested in his office at Aker Solutions by officers from Norway’s police intelligence unit PST in May 2015. The company itself has alerted PST (Politiets sikkerhetstjeneste) to alarming material and traffic on its employee’s computer.
Meling sought full acquittal for his client, but the court didn’t believe the defendants arguments.