Compensation Awarded in Guðmundur and Geirfinnur Case Skip to content

Compensation Awarded in Guðmundur and Geirfinnur Case

By Ragnar Tómas

Guðmundur and Geirfinur
Photo: Golli.

The state treasury dispensed ISK 774 million ($6,273,847 / €5,687,243) on Wednesday in compensation to parties acquitted before the supreme court in 2018 in a retrial of the Guðmundur and Geirfinnur case, Fréttablaðið reports. The treasury also compensated the spouses and children of two deceased defendants.

A Total of ISK 815 million paid

According to PM Katrín Jakobsdóttir, the Office of the Prime Minister concluded, upon reviewing the case, that it would not suggest amendments to the damages recommended by the conciliation committee, except regarding compensation awarded to relatives of Sævar Marinó Ciesielski: it was raised by ISK 15 million ($121,547 / €110,214)

The state treasury also paid legal costs amounting to 5% of the total compensation. The total cost paid amounted to ISK 815 million ($6,602,437 / €5,987,816).

Albert Klahn Skaftason received ISK 15 million ($121,547 / €110,214), Guðjón Skarphéðinsson received ISK 145 million ($1,175,048 / €1,065,263), Kristján Viðar Júlíusson received ISK 204 million ($1,653,170 / €1,499,029), relatives of Tryggvi Rúnar Leifsson received ISK 171 million ($1,385,746 / €1,256,539) and relatives of Sævar Marinó Ciesielski received ISK 239 million ($1,936,959 / €1,756,114).

In brief

The Guðmundur and Geirfinnur case is one of the most notorious criminal cases in Icelandic history.

The case revolved around the disappearance of two men, Guðmundur and Geirfinnur, in 1974. Six people were ultimately convicted of the murders of these two men based on confessions extracted by members of the police force. These confessions are believed to be faulty due to extreme length and intensity of the interrogations. Furthermore, police never recovered the bodies of the missing men, were not able to confirm the location of the crime scene, and had no actual witnesses or forensic evidence.

In September 2018 (in a retrial of the case), Guðjón Skarphéðinsson, Sævar Ciesielski, Tryggvi Rúnar Leifsson, Kristján Viðar Júlíusson, and Albert Klahn Skaftason were acquitted of the murders of Guðmundur Einarsson and Geirfinnur Einarsson in 1974, for which they were sentenced in 1980. Sævar Ciesielski died in 2011. Tryggvi Rúnar Leifsson died in 2009.

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