A Norwegian prosecutor asked the Oslo County Court on Friday to sentence Jan Erik “Jannik” Iversen to 22 months in jail, for alleged extortion. Iversen is charged with trying to frighten wealthy industrialist Kjell Inge Røkke into paying him several million kroner.
The four-day criminal court case that began Tuesday with Røkke as the reluctant plaintiff wrapped up after more dramatic testimony. A former head of the national police preparedness unit who now works as a private security adviser, Anders Snortheimsmoen, testified on Thursday that Iversen had admitted he wanted to “beat up” Røkke.
“I was hired in to settle a conflict between the two, and to ensure security around Røkke,” Snortheimsmoen testified. Instead, an allegedly “aggressive” Iversen told Snortheimsmoen that he wanted to beat Røkke and then “dump him outside Politihuset (the main police station in Oslo) so he could tell what he had done.”
Iversen, who has a criminal record and a history of demanding money from people, has claimed Røkke hired him on various occasions to carry out unclear assignments. He’s charged with having tried to pressure Røkke into paying out large sums of so-called “hush money.” If Røkke didn’t pay, Iversen threatened to publicize unfavourable information about Røkke, the nature of which has not been revealed. Another man testifying in the case claimed Røkke had asked him to deliver cash in shopping bags to Iversen on several occasions.
Røkke has denied ever hiring Iversen for any assignments. Prosecutor Terje Nedrebø Michelsen asked the court to sentence the 62-year-old Iversen to a year and 10 months in prison, claiming that Iversen’s motive all along has been to extort money from Røkke, who’s one of Norway’s wealthiest men.