Most of the 25 defendants in the Bankastræti Club case are in their twenties. The oldest is in his forties, while the youngest is 19 years old, RÚV reports. Despite the defendants having registered legal domiciles in different parts of the country, the indictment will be registered in one of the courtrooms of the District Court.
District attorney issues indictment
The district attorney issued an indictment in the Bankastræti Club case last Thursday. A group of masked men barged into the nightclub in November of last year and attacked three men. 25 are charged, one of them for attempted murder, RÚV reports. The latter has a registered legal domicile in Hafnarfjörður and will turn twenty in September. He is the only defendant being held in custody.
The man in custody is said to have stabbed three men, one of whom suffered seven stab wounds: He was stabbed twice in the right shoulder, twice on the right side of his chest, twice in the right thigh, and once in the right forearm. Another victim was stabbed once in the left side and the third once in the right forearm and once in the right thigh.
Ten are then charged with a specially dangerous assault. They are said to have attacked the three victims with kicks and punches. One member of the group is accused of hitting one of the victims repeatedly with a bat.
The other fourteen are accused of participating in the attack. They burst into the club wearing masks, were informed of the intent, and were inside the club during the attack. The prosecutor told RÚV that they thus posed a threat to the three victims and were complicit in the attack.
An unusually large group of defendants
The indictment was received by the Reykjavík District Court on Tuesday. The presiding judge will now assign the case to a judge who issues a summons that must then be served on the defendants.
Chief Judge Ingibjörg Þorsteinsdóttir told RÚV that this was “an unusually large number of defendants.” Ingibjörg was unwilling to comment further on how the proceedings would be conducted as the case had yet to be assigned to a judge; however, it is necessary to consider how best to conduct the proceedings. As noted by RÚV, there are various possibilities in the situation, but the indictment would always be registered in one of the courtrooms of the district court.
Although, according to the indictment, the 25 defendants have registered legal domiciles in different areas of the country – Eskifirður, Hvolsvelli, Sandgerði, Reykjanesbær, Akureyri, Selfoss, and Reykjavík – the summons can be served at the person’s place of residence. Most of the defendants have a place of residence in the capital area, and, as RÚV notes, it has become more and more common for lawyers to be authorised to accept summons on behalf of their clients.
Most of the defendants are in their twenties; two are 19 years old. A few are in their thirties. The oldest is 37 years old. The latter is also charged with weapons and drug offences; the police found brass knuckles, four knives, a baseball bat, an air pistol, and 0.63 grams of cocaine.
About thirty were arrested in connection with the investigation of the case and the attack had several consequences. Police preparedness was increased in the city centre for the following weekends, and the Minister of Justice declared war on organised crime. Both the American and British embassies also asked tourists from these two respective countries to show caution during a night out on the town.