The mayor of Bø, a municipality in the county of Telemark, Norway, has told the Norwegian newspaper Telemarksavisa that he was pleasantly surprised by the news that Varg Vikernes (a.k.a. Count Grishnackh) — the former BURZUM mastermind who is currently serving a Norwegian prison term for the August 1993 murder of MAYHEM guitarist Oystein Aarseth (a.k.a. Euronymous) — has chosen to take up residence in the village. Vikernes has purchased a small farm in Bø, where he will move in with his family after he finishes serving his sentence.
"We want Varg Vikernes to feel welcome in Bø and we expect that he is going to establish a normal life here," Mayor Arne Storhaug said. "Of course, I have my own thoughts on what Varg Vikernes has done, but once he has completed his sentence, he is welcome to start afresh here. We want to open the door to all those who wish to live in Bø and this includes Vikernes. We will, of course, expect that he, like everyone else, will follow the rules. These are serious crimes that he has committed, but at the same time, we will do whatever we can to make it possible for Vikernes and his family to build a new life here."
Although Varg was recently denied parole, he is allowed to leave the prison regularly to walk around Tromsø, Norway (where the prison is located) and visit his family: his mother, his wife, a one-year-old son and a fifteen-year-old daughter. Varg's wife is also pregnant and they are looking forward to the new addition to their family.
"I'm ready for society — and I have been for many years," Vikernes told the Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet in a brand new interview which was published this past Sunday (July 6). "I have learned from my mistakes and become older. Now I just want to be together with my family. My mind has never been in prison; I think all the time about what I should do on the day that I am released."
He added, "I have barely seen my son since he came into the world. Even though I hear his voice on the phone almost every day, it is very tough to not be present while he is growing up. I miss my family. And I look forward the day that I could work on my farm, create music, write books and be with the wife and kids around the clock — and live a normal life. I have received tremendous support from my family. It means a lot."
Vikernes is serving a 21-year sentence, the maximum that Norwegian law allows, for murder and setting fire to three churches in 1993. Having spent the last 15 years behind bars and after serving two-thirds of his prison time, he has become eligible to apply for parole.
Case workers at the Justice Ministry fear that Vikernes will be unable to adjust to life on the outside after his years in jail.
In denying his parole for the second time, the Justice Ministry emphasized that Vikernes escaped from prison in 2003 and that he has ties to neo-Nazi groups.
"I haven't been in contact with them for a long time. Police security services know this," Vikernes previously told the VG newspaper.