Young football referee charged with 300 sexual assaults

Romerike District Court.Lillestrøm. Nedre Romerike District Court.Photo: Heiko Junge / NTB scanpix

A football referee in his 20s has been charged with sexually assaults of around 300 boys in what is being called Norway’s biggest ever case of sexual abuse.

The football referee was arrested for the first time in July 2016, but was released after a couple of weeks in custody. After that, he had committed more assaults, which led him to be arrested last autumn, and the number of the victims in the case increased.

The case is scheduled to start in Nedre Romerike District Court on the 22nd of January. He has acknowledged all the abuse charges, but has not acknowledged guilt for all of them.

A total of eight development assistance lawyers have been appointed, who will safeguard the interests of the victims in the case. To Dagbladet newspaper, Anne Hazeland, said that they are struggling to get contact their clients, and that many parents do not even know that their sons were victims.

She is a lawyer for 49 of the boys and has been in contact with half of them. Hazeland also experienced that many of the people she gets in contact with do not want anything to do with the case, partly because the boys have grown older.

‘’They don’t want a lawyer, they don’t want to go to court, they don’t want to know anything about the defendant. They just want to be left in peace’’ told the newspaper.

According to her, many of the boys also fear that they will be recognised by other victims in the case, as several of them are from the same area.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today