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Norway millionaire ‘forcefully denies’ wife’s murder

The Norwegian energy entrepreneur Tom Hagen has denied involvement in the disappearance of his wife, after he was arrested on Tuesday on suspicion of murder.

Norway millionaire 'forcefully denies' wife's murder
Tom Hagen's lawyer Svein Holden arrives at Lillestrøm police station near Oslo. Photo: Terje Pedersen/NTB Scanpix/AFP F
“He forcefully maintains that he has nothing to do with it,” Hagen's lawyer Svein Holden told NRK after meeting his 70-year-old client in detention at Lillestrøm police station outside Oslo. 
 
“Obviously he is affected by the situation, there is no doubt about it,” Holden added. “He finds it very difficult to be accused of something he maintains that he has nothing to do with.” 
 
On Wednesday morning Holden said in another interview with NRK that he expected his client to be released later that day when police ask Nedre Romerike district court to extend his detention. 
 
“This is a very tenuous basis for an arrest,” Holden said as he arrived. “I expect the court to release him.” 
 
Hagen was arrested on Tuesday morning on suspicion of “murder or complicity in the murder” of his wife, Anne-Elisabeth Falkevik Hagen. 
 
His denial came as several Norwegian media outlets, including the VG newspaper and state broadcaster NRK were passed a copy of a marriage agreement Hagen had struck with his wife back in 1987. 
 
Under the deal, all she would be entitled to in the case of a divorce would be a plot of land, 200,000 kroner, and a Citroën BX 14 RE, or car of a similar standard.
 
Everything else was to go to her husband, with the agreement stating: “everything Tom Hagen in the future acquires either through inheritance, endowment, salary, investment return, or otherwise, is his peculiar property.”
 
According to VG, the police lawyers believe that the marriage agreement is so lopsided and unfair that if it had ever been taken to court, it could have been declared invalid, entitling Anne-Elisabeth Hagen to a much larger share of her husband's fortune. 
 
This, the Norwegian media speculated on Tuesday, may be a possible motive for the murder. 
 
The lawyer Mette Yvonne Larsen, who is not involved in the case, agreed that the contract could easily have been annulled. 
 
“If she had tried to challenge this marriage agreement as part of a request for divorce, her husband would have been ripped apart by a court,” she told VG. 
 

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CRIME

Two more arrested for suspected involvement in Oslo Pride shooting

Norwegian police said Monday they had arrested two alleged accomplices of the suspect in a June shooting that killed two people in Oslo on the sidelines of Pride celebrations.

Two more arrested for suspected involvement in Oslo Pride shooting

The two suspects were arrested on Sunday in Oslo suspected of “complicity in a terrorist act”, the Oslo police said in a statement.

One is a Somali man in his forties, the other a Norwegian in his thirties — both of them known to police. Their identities were not disclosed.

In the early hours of June 25, a man opened fire near a gay bar in central Oslo during celebrations linked to the city’s Pride festival.

The shooting killed two men, aged 54 and 60, and wounded 21 others. Immediately after the shooting, police arrested Zaniar Matapour, a
43-year-old Norwegian of Iranian origin, on suspicion of carrying out the attack.

The new arrests bring the number of people implicated in the attack to four, as Norwegian police announced last week they were seeking another suspect linked to the shooting.

On Friday, Oslo police announced that they had issued an international arrest warrant for Arfan Qadeer Bhatti, a 45-year-old Islamist with a prior conviction, who is also suspected of “complicity in a terrorist act”.

“The police still believes Bhatti is in Pakistan,” a country with which Norway has no extradition agreement, police said Monday.

“To ensure the best possible cooperation with the Pakistani authorities, we had Oslo police officers in Pakistan a short time ago,” it added.

According to police, they have not yet had direct contact with Arfan Bhatti but have spoken to his Norwegian lawyer, Svein Holden, and say they expect the legal proceedings in Pakistan to take time.

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