Journalists and sisters arrested on suspicion of trying to blackmail the Icelandic prime minister

Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, Hlin Einarsdottir (left) and Malin Brand (right).
Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson, Hlin Einarsdottir (left) and Malin Brand (right). Vísir
The Icelandic police arrested two women last Friday under the suspicion that they tried to blackmail millions of ISK out of the prime minister, Sigmundur David Gunnlaugsson. Both admitted to trying to blackmail the prime minister.

The politician received a letter last week where he was told to pay a few million ISK or damaging information regarding him would be made public. The information, according to Visir's sources, are said to connect the prime minister to Icelandic businessman Bjorn Ingi Hrafnsson's purchase of DV, an Icelandic media company running a critical newspaper and news site.

Björn Ingi is a member of the Progressive Party just like Sigmundur David. The purchase made headlines last November but a substantial amount of money had just been put into the media before it was sold. Therefore it's assumed the purchase of the company was quite costly. Hrafnsson has never explained where the money came from that made the purchase possible. He refused to comment on the story.

Investigation close to done

The prime minister contacted the police department on Thursday which in turn set up an investigation that lead to the arrest of the women, sisters in fact, well known female journalists in Iceland. One is Hlin Einarsdottir former editor of feminine online website and the other Malin Brand, currently a car journalist with Morgunbladid.

The arrest was in a remote area just south of Hafnarfjordur, the most southern part of the Reykjavik capital area. The two were not put in custody but the case is under investigation by the Icelandic police. Fridrik Smari Bjorgvinsson, Chief Inspector of the Reykjavik Metropolitan Police, said that the police acted according to the instructions put forth in the letter to the prime minister.

According to the police the investigation is close to done and will in turn be sent to the state prosecutor.

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