Varg Vikernes Found Guilty of Hate Crimes

Varg Vikernes Found Guilty of Hate Crimes
A French court delivered a guilty verdict to Burzum leader Kristian "Varg" Vikernes today (July 8), landing him a six-month suspended sentence and a fine for inciting racial hatred online.

Norway's the Local reports that a $10,000 fine was delivered in 41-year-old Vikernes's absence, with neither the black metal musician nor his lawyer being present at the court at the time of the verdict.

As previously reported, Vikernes was accused of publishing anti-Semitic and xenophobic material on his website, an act the musician had denied. Ten excerpts from his blog, written between March and July 2013, were presented during the case, though Vikernes claimed they had been written by someone else. He had previously commented that "at any given moment 350 people pretending to be Varg Vikernes on Facebook."

The racial hatred charges followed Vikernes's arrest in the Correze region of France last summer, where he and his wife Marie Cachet were picked up after allegedly "plotting a massacre." Following a raid of the pair's home, they were released after authorities were "unable to identify specific terrorist plans or terrorist targets."