SATYRICON Guitarists Released On Bail; New Court Hearing To Be Scheduled

SATYRICON guitarists Steinar Gundersen and Arnt Gronbech, who are charged with giving a fan a date-rape drug and sexually assaulting her in a tour bus following a Dec. 15 concert in Toronto, have been released from Canadian jail on bail of CAD $50,000 each (approx. $41,000).

The two guitarists, who are session/touring musicians and not full-time members of the band, are now back in Norway but have to return to Canada for a court hearing.

It has yet to be decided when a new court hearing will be held.

"It could take time. There has not yet been a date set," stated Ingvard Havnen, Norway's ambassador to Canada. "In the meantime, the investigation continues."

The Norwegian Consul General from Toronto, Eivind Hoff, represented the Norwegian embassy at the bail hearing, which took place last Thursday (Dec. 30).

"They intend to vigorously defend themselves on this, and they look forward to the opportunity to present all the relevant facts at the appropriate time in the appropriate forum," Toronto defense lawyer Jody Berkes had previously told the Toronto Star.

Gundersen, 34, and Gronbech, 27, have each been charged with administering a stupefying drug and sexual assault. A woman contacted police at 4:30 a.m. on Dec. 16, hours after the show at the FunHaus.

SATYRICON were about two-thirds through a North American "Return Of The Antichrist Tour" in support of the U.S. release of their 2002 CD "Volcano", a chart-topping, award-winning album in Norway. It has been released in North America on the EatURmusic imprint headed up by SYSTEM OF A DOWN guitarist Daron Malakian and distributed by Columbia, a division of Sony Music.

The CD has sold fewer than 10,000 copies in the U.S. and no figures could be obtained for Canada.

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