GORGOROTH Singer Appeals Sentence

GORGOROTH singer Gaahl is hoping that the Norwegian court will overturn the 18-month sentence he received in early May for beating a 41-year-old man in what the victim called a ritual attack. "Gaahl has appealed the sentence to the High Court — criminal division, but as these things take a long time here in Norway, nothing has happened yet," reads a posting on the band's web site.

The 28-year-old black metal vocalist (photo), who has several prior convictions, including one for assault and battery, was sentenced at Sunnfjord court in Forde, Norway. In addition to the prison term, Gaahl was ordered to pay 75,000 NOK (approximately $11,000) to the victim, plus an additional 29,000 NOK (approximately $4,300) in damages.

The court's sentence matched the recommendation from prosecutor Ronny Iden, who took into account the fact that Gaahl had a prior conviction for assault. In that 2001 incident, Gaahl brutalized his victim for hours and was sentenced to one year in prison without the possibility of parole. In addition, he was ordered to pay 158,000 NOK (approximately $23,000) in punitive damages. "Two people have had their lives irreparably shattered by the defendant's actions," the court said in the written sentence.

Gaahl is one of the musicians tentatively scheduled to perform a selection of classic BATHORY songs during Norway's Hole In The Sky Festival in late August as a tribute to the group's mastermind Thomas "Quorthon" Forsberg, who passed away earlier this month.

GORGOROTH drew international attention in early February after they were accused of "offending religious feelings" during a concert in Poland. The band were also suspected of breaching the Polish law on protection of animals by displaying the severed and impaled heads of sheep as part of their stage act.

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