Notorious booze baron nabbed at border
Erik Fallo receives his sentence at an Oslo court in 2005 (Photo: Cornelius Poppe/Scanpix)
25 July 2012
After a dramatic car chase, Swedish police on Tuesday afternoon apprehended the well-known Norwegian smuggler Erik Fallo with hundreds of litres of vodka stowed in his vehicle.
“We're holding the man with us and a meeting between him and our prosecutors will take place here as soon as possible,” said Mats Nilsson of Sweden's Åmål police to newspaper Verdens Gang (VG) on Tuesday evening. The 65-year-old Fallo is a well-known character in the Norwegian press due to his involvement in a smuggling scandal which left 18 people dead after drinking methanol in the early 2000s. In 2005 he was found guilty of five charges of murder by poisoning and one of manslaughter. After two appeals, he was subsequently found guilty of two charges of manslaughter and sentenced to prison for eight years. In a Norwegian documentary from earlier this year Fallo spoke about smuggling as a profession. “You have to be calm and not start groaning and crying if you face a sentence of a year or two,” he said in the documentary, according to VG. After a car chase lasting for an hour and twenty minutes, Fallo was arrested in Strömstad on Tuesday afternoon. When crossing the border between Sweden and Norway, Fallo refused to stop at a routine customs check. He then forced his way into Sweden and led some 10-12 Swedish police cars on a dramatic chase through counties Bohuslän and Dalsland. Fallo finally gave up near Strömstad, while being tailed by two patrol cars. The arrest itself was not dramatic, according to VG. After seizing the vehicle officers subsequently found 567 litres of bootleg vodka in the car.