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Has not dominated Jan Helge Andersen

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Viggo Kristiansen arrives at the trial against Jan Helge Andersen in Sør-Rogaland district court on Tuesday. Photo: Terje Pedersen / NTB

Of NTB | 23.04.2024 14:51:04

Crime and justice: – I don’t feel that I have dominated him or ruled over him in any way. I have never perceived that I have led him on, said Viggo Kristiansen (44) when he gave his testimony to the court on Tuesday afternoon.

The statement concerns the impression created by the friendship between Kristiansen and his former best friend Jan Helge Andersen during the criminal proceedings at the beginning of the 2000s. The dominant and apparently authoritarian role Kristiansen is said to have had has been used to partially explain how the assaults and murders in Baneheia could take place at all.

Andersen claimed in his statement that Kristiansen threatened him to commit assault and murder. He maintained that he feared his comrade to the extent that he did not dare to do anything other than what he was ordered to do. The choice was between killing or being killed, according to Andersen’s explanation.

– When we had different opinions about what we should do, we talked about it. I’ve never had the feeling of being the big leader who said we should do this and that and that he just followed along, said Kristiansen.

The prosecution now believes Andersen was alone in raping and killing Stine Sofie Sørstrønen (8) and Lena Sløgedal Paulsen (10).

– 19 May 2000 was a completely ordinary day for me. I got up and got ready for work. After work I did as I usually do, I went down to my hut, said Kristiansen.

When he managed to lock himself out of his garage, he cycled to Baneheia in a hurry to get the key Andersen had at his disposal. The comrade was in the open air area to train with the Home Guard.

Tuesday was the first time he met his former best friend, accused of murder Andersen, since the criminal proceedings at the beginning of the 2000s.

They had both grown older, Andersen had a summer job at Color Line, and Kristiansen enjoyed his job as a helper on a garbage truck. They weren’t like peas for long, Kristiansen said.

– It is dangerous to speculate as to why, but I feel that we drifted apart. We could meet now and then, but we no longer hung out with each other day in and day out, Kristiansen said.

He initially admitted that he felt “a lot of nerves” about having to explain himself in the nearly 24-year-old murder case.

– There are quite a few nerves involved. It probably has a lot to do with the media and the way the media are disrespectful. I have felt the media a lot on the body, and a lot of nerves are probably connected to that. But I will try to explain myself as best I can, said Kristiansen.

Viggo Kristiansen has served almost 21 years for murder and assault he did not commit. After he was completely acquitted and cleared of any involvement with the Baneheia murders a year and a half ago, his former comrade has been charged in the reopened criminal case.

In the spring and summer when the murders took place, the two had begun to drift apart, as Kristiansens experienced.

(© NTB)

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