Seven individuals are in custody in connection with a murder that took place in East Reykjavík last Saturday, Fréttablaðið reports. The first arrest took place last Sunday, with three more arrested outside Selfoss, South Iceland on Monday night. Four more were taken into custody yesterday, though one individual was released. One of the seven individuals currently in custody is allegedly an informant of the police’s drug unit.
Passers-by in downtown Reykjavík yesterday evening were taken aback by the rare sight of a convoy of police and special forces vehicles outside the Reykjavík District Court. As least three special forces vehicles and two police cars surrounded the courthouse as the four arrested that day were brought before the judge. Three of them were sentenced to a week in custody while one, reportedly a woman, was released.
Police Tight-Lipped on Extensive Case
Chief Superintendent Margeir Sveinsson is leading the police investigation into the murder. “This is a very large and extensive investigation that we have and that explains why it’s not possible to discuss specific events,” he stated. Margeir says the case is one of the largest of its kind in recent years, and confirmed that police are investigating whether the case is connected to a settlement in the criminal underworld.
Despite its magnitude, Margeir says the case does not pose a general threat to the public. “If we believe there is any danger posed to the public by such groups, then the police would always take appropriate action. We’re never going to let that happen without intervening. Then we would not be doing our job.” Police are now working to uncover the scope of each individual’s involvement in the case.
Europol Assists With Gathering Information
The murder victim’s name was Armando Beqirai and he was in his early 30s. He was an Albanian national and a resident of Iceland. He leaves behind his Icelandic wife and a young child. Most of the individuals in custody due to the murder are of foreign origin, though one is Icelandic. Some are residents of Iceland while others are not. The international division of the National Police Commissioner’s Office is assisting with the investigation, as is Europol. According to Margeir, the two parties are mainly assisting with gathering information.