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Andersen was alone in Baneheia – must be sentenced to two years in prison

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Prosecutor Johan Øverberg was clear in his proceedings that the prosecution believes the new evidence in the Baneheia case shows that Jan Helge Andersen was alone in the assaults and murders 24 years ago. Photo: Beate Oma Dahle / NTB

Of NTB | 22.05.2024 14:21:13

Crime and justice: – We have submitted a new photo of evidence – a photo that shows Jan Helge Andersen alone as the perpetrator, said state attorney Johan Øverberg when he opened the prosecution’s proceedings in Sør-Rogaland District Court on Wednesday morning.

Co-prosecutor Andreas Schei concluded the proceedings by submitting a claim that Andersen be sentenced to three years in prison for the murder of Lena Sløgedal Paulsen (10). The low sentence is due to the fact that Andersen has already been sentenced to 19 years in prison in the Baneheia case. Overall, the court cannot go beyond the law’s maximum of 21 years in prison.

Schei gave the court an in-depth review of the most important piece of evidence: DNA findings from Andersen on both victims that are consistent with being deposited during sexual assault.

– We have 15 matches that coincide with Andersen, as well as two from the coroner and one from a family member. But there is nothing to suggest interference from Viggo Kristiansen – or from any other specific person. There is no indication of a second perpetrator, no matter how you look at it, Schei said.

– It’s 15-0 to Andersen. There are 15 hits on him and none from a possible other perpetrator, he said.

The prosecution has opened the door for the court to decide on a verdict for complicity in the murder if it believes the evidence against Andersen is not sufficient to convict him of the murder itself.

In the procedure, Øverberg highlighted the consistent contradictions and illogical elements in Andersen’s versions. A story in which Andersen was believed for a long time. The prosecution believes that the court can disregard the part of the explanation that concerns Andersen acting under threats from Kristiansen, who has been acquitted of the misdeeds.

– But who is Andersen then? Is he not a follower, not a victim of the “monster from Baneheia”, Øverberg asked, adding that in the prosecutor’s opinion the defendant had a more active role as an abuser and murderer.

– The prosecution believes that Andersen’s explanation is completely characterized by a disclaimer of responsibility. It is implausible and does not match other evidence in the case, State Attorney Schei added.

* New DNA analyzes show the discovery of biological material from Andersen on both girls. The findings are consistent with them stemming from abuse. However, no DNA from Viggo Kristiansen has been found.

* Teledata is in reality proof of exclusion for Kristiansen, according to the prosecutor. It has not been possible to make measurements that indicate that Kristiansen’s phone was at the scene. The nearest base station to which the phone was connected does not cover the crime scene.

* Kristiansen’s bicycle was not parked where Andersen claims, the prosecutor believes. A witness particularly interested in bicycles stayed at this location and told the court he was sure he did not see the bicycle there.

* Andersen’s own explanation is not credible, the prosecutor believes, and points to the fact that he has repeatedly changed and adapted it as he has been confronted with other evidence in the case.

– There must have been two perpetrators, many have thought. But it is a notion that lacks grounding in the evidence, said Øverberg, who believes that Andersen’s explanation is by far a description of how a man could be alone about the rapes and murders.

Each of the parents must be awarded compensation of NOK 600,000-700,000, Brækhus concluded to NTB when the court was adjourned for the day. The amount is twice as high as the norm, because case law gives the opportunity to go over if there are very special circumstances.

– In this case, there is a violent brutality in the act of murder, combined with sexual assault which was probably carried out to reduce the chance of being caught. For those left behind, it has also been re-traumatizing that the case has constantly been brought up and talked about, Brækhus pointed out when he held his proceedings before the court.

The prosecution also touched on the parents’ situation in its proceedings.

– It has been 24 years since the murders in Baneheia. When we heard mother Klara and father Arne-Bernt’s explanation here in court, it was obvious that time alone does not heal the grief, pain and loss. They deserve that you do what you can to give them a final answer, Øverberg said.

After five weeks of the reopened murder case against Jan Helge Andersen (43), it is now in its final days. The prosecution and the defense attorneys proceed on Wednesday, and the case will be taken up for trial when defender Svein Holden has finished his proceedings on Thursday afternoon.

This is the prosecution’s most important evidence that Andersen is guilty of the murder:

The circumstances surrounding the Baneheia murders and the strain Lena Sløgedal Paulsen’s parents have been put on, suggest compensation well above the norm, argued aid lawyer Håkon Brækhus when he proceeded on Wednesday afternoon.

(© NTB)

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