Gylfi Sigurðsson Will Not Sue for Damages, Attorney Says

Footballer

Footballer Gylfi Sigurðsson has decided not to sue for damages against the British authorities in connection with a prolonged criminal investigation that was eventually dropped last April. This was revealed by attorney Róbert Spanó in a written response to an inquiry from Mbl.is.

No suit for damages, all things being equal

Icelandic footballer Gylfi Sigurðsson has chosen not to pursue legal action against British authorities after a 637-day investigation by the Manchester police into allegations of sexual offenses, Mbl.is reports.

“After careful consideration, Gylfi has decided to look ahead. All things being equal, he intends to refrain from claiming damages,” Róbert Spanó, Gylfi’s attorney, stated in a written response to an inquiry from Mbl.is.

As previously reported by IR, Gylfi was arrested in July 2021. He was released on bail shortly after his arrest but has not played a professional football match since then. The charges were dropped in April of this year after an investigation team collaborating with the Crown Prosecution Service concluded that the available evidence did “not reach the threshold set out on the Code for Crown Prosecutors.”

Mbl.is reports that Gylfi, who was under contract with the English Premier League team Everton, suffered considerable financial losses as a result of the investigation. “His football career has also suffered a considerable setback,” Mbl.is notes.

Attorney Róbert Spanó had previously told Mbl.is that Gylfi was considering a lawsuit. “In my opinion, it is clear that the handling of the case in the UK took far too long in light of the circumstances. It has caused significant damage to Gylfi and his family, as well as enormous harm. In the coming days, Gylfi will receive legal advice on whether there is a reason to seek justice in the British courts,” Róbert told Mbl.is in April.

Mbl.is notes that the English Premier League team Everton intends to seek compensation for the case and demands 10 million pounds or what amounts to about ISK 1.7 billion.

Ukrainian War-Damages Registry Approved at Reykjavík Summit

Reykjavík Summit 2023

During the Reykjavík Summit of the Council of Europe this morning, European leaders signed an agreement to establish a “Register of Damage” for the war in Ukraine. PM Katrín Jakobsdóttir has stated that it is important that Russia is held to account for its war of aggression in Ukraine, Mbl.is reports.

43 countries already signed the agreement

This morning, European leaders approved a so-called “Register of Damage” at the Reykjavík Summit of the European Council. As noted by Mbl.is, it is assumed that the registry, designed to hold Moscow to account, will be operational for three years, recording data and claims due to damages and losses incurred by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Mbl.is reports that a total of 43 countries, alongside the European Union, have already signed, or announced their intention to sign, an agreement to the establishment of the registry. Several countries have, however, dropped out: among them Turkey and Hungary – both of whom are members of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Armenia, Azerbaijan, Serbia, and Bosnia have announced plans to refrain from signing the agreement.

Marija Pejčinović Burić, Secretary General of the European Council, was quoted by Deutsche Welle (DW) as stating that the creation of the registry was “a first, necessary, urgent step” ensuring “justice that is centred on the victims” of the war.

Prime Minister Katrín Jakobsdóttir stated that support and solidarity with Ukraine had been a priority during Iceland’s presidency of the Council of Europe and that it was important that the outcome of the summit in Reykjavík was that Russia was held responsible for its attack in Ukraine in a broad way. The Council of Europe should play an important role in this regard.

Mark Rutte, the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, was also present at the signing of the agreement; the Council of Europe’s Register of Damage will be based in the Hague and will also operate a branch in Ukraine.

Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal welcomed the registry: “We are grateful to the Council of Europe and all the participating countries for providing such support from the highest level of government. We invite other countries from all over the world to join the registry to express their support for the importance of Russian responsibility for its war against Ukraine,” Mbl.is notes.

As noted by DW, the United States, who attended the summit as an observer; Canada; and Japan have also voiced their support for the creation of the register.

State Sentenced to Pay Compensation for 13-Hour Detainment

The district court of Reykjavík has sentenced the Icelandic government to pay ISK 100,000 [$902.53; €777.41] in damages to a man who was held in a prison cell for thirteen hours after being arrested. RÚVreports that the judge determined that police had not shown sufficient cause to hold the plaintiff for so long.

The man was arrested following an incident at his home in December of 2012. The man’s wife had called 112 [the emergency line] and screams and noise were heard in the background before the call was cut off. Two police officers were sent to the home under the assumption that there was a domestic violence situation in progress. The man tried to attack the officers, who held him down and then took him to the station, where he was held in a jail cell. It appears, however, that no attempt was made to interrogate the man, and nothing in the police report explains why he was held for so long.

The man was also petitioning for compensation for the use of what he claimed was unnecessary force in his arrest. This claim was rejected by the judge, as police were able to prove that he had been extremely agitated at the time of arrest, and had exhibited threatening behavior when he attempted to attack the officers.