Norwegian black metal musician and Burzum frontman Varg Vikernes has been released from a French prison after authorities determined that he was not likely to commit a large-scale act of terrorism as previously suspected.
On Tuesday, Vikernes and French his wife Marie Cachet were arrested on suspected terrorism charges after she legally purchased four rifles. French police were concerned that Vikernes, a convicted murderer and pagan neo-Nazi, might have been planning a massacre similar to Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik, who sent Vikernes his manifesto days before embarking on his attack in Olso two years ago. Norways’ NRK reports that after two days, French police were "unable to identify specific terrorist plans or terrorist target” from Vikernes.
Despite being released, Vikernes is still scheduled to appear in court “in a few weeks for breach of racism laws in France,” for purportedly making hateful comments about Jews and Muslims online. Not to prejudge or anything, but based on all of the hateful comments about Jews and Muslims he routinely posts on his blog, it kind of seems like an open and shut case there.
This is far from Vikernes’ first encounter with the law. In 1993, Vikernes stabbed fellow Mayhem bandmate Øystein “Euronymous” Aarseth to death in a fight. The next year, he was convicted of Euronymous’s murder as well as the arson of three Norwegian churches. Vikernes served 15 years of a 21-year prison sentence for the murder and arsons. When Vikernes was arrested, Norwegian authorities found hundreds of pounds of explosives and more than 3,000 rounds of ammunition in his house, possibly to be used in an attack on an anti-fascist Olso punk group. Vikernes was eventually released from prison in 2009, and has continued to make music as Burzum.