BURZUM mastermind Varg Vikernes (a.k.a. Count Grishnackh) and his 25-year-old French wife, Marie Cachet, have been released from custody — just two days after they were arrested on suspicion of planning a "massacre." French prosecutors confirmed to NRK (Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation) that Vikernes was freed at 7:00 p.m. Thursday night. The couple were picked up Tuesday morning on their farm near the town of Salon-la-Tour, a commune in the Corrèze department in central France.
French police can hold suspects in terrorism cases for up to 96 hours before bringing preliminary charges.
Vikerenes, 40, who has been living in France for the past three years, and his wife were arrested as a preventive measure after Vikernes posted aggressive racist, xenophobic and anti-Semitic comments on Internet forums. The couple's home was searched and five guns were found, including four rifles legally purchased by Varg's wife as a member of a rifle club.
"Vikernes did not plan terror attacks," his French lawyer, Julien Freyssinet, told Aftenposten, according to the French news bureau AFP. "The weapons are purchased for the couple's leisure activities and life philosophy. Vikernes only wants to live peacefully with his family."
He added that weapons seized by officers at the couple's home had been acquired "completely legally and without hiding a thing, as part of a philosophy followed by the couple — that of survivalism."
According to the AFP, Vikernes had been under police surveillance for many years, but it was only when his wife acquired weapons that police started a formal investigation.
In 2011, Vikernes called for the French to vote for the National Front (FN), writing on his official web site that doing so would be the only way to avoid the scourge of mass immigration.
In the open letter, entitled "Dear France," he said: "Your parents may induce you into a vote other than for the FN, but do not listen. They are responsible for the plight of today’s France, because they were too ignorant and too loose, or too brainwashed, to do as they should. They have already proved to the world that they have failed and betrayed France."
Varg was convicted in 1994 and sentenced to Norway's longest prison term of 21 years for the August 1993 murder of MAYHEM guitarist Oystein Aarseth (a.k.a. Euronymous) and for burning down three churches, including the original Holmenkollen Chapel next to the Holmenkollen Ski Jump in Oslo. He was released from prison in 2009 after serving 16 years of that sentence.