Norway’s highest court (Høyesterett) has rejected an appeal from former Oslo Police inspector Eirik Jensen. That clears the way for a new trial back at the appeals court level, after appeals court judges had refused to accept a jury’s decision that acquitted Jensen of smuggling hash but convicted him of corruption.
Jensen’s defense attorney had appealed the appeals court’s decision to set aside the jury’s decision. “We had hoped the Supreme Court would order that the jury’s decision be respected,” lawyer John Christian Elden told newspaper Aftenposten, but claimed he and Jensen were glad the appeals court must now at least address the question of whether its decision should be reversed.
Legal technicalities and the complexity of the charges against Jensen have turned his case into a courtroom marathon since he was first arrested and accused of working with and benefiting from his crimial informers. An Oslo City Court found him guilty in 2017 of both corruption and smuggling hash, and sentenced him to 21 years in prison. His appeals trial began in August of last year and ran through January, when the jury delivered its mixed verdict that the court’s panel of three judges refused to accept.
That resulted in the equivalent of a mistrial, and the order for a new trial with different judges in the appeals court.