On Tuesday 5 September, the Lundin war crimes trial starts at the Stockholm District Court with the presentation of the case by the prosecution. The defendants are Ian Lundin, Alex Schneiter and Orrön Energy. Not Lundin Energy, because shortly after the indictment, the company merged with AkerBP through a construction that placed its criminal liability on Orrön Energy, a much smaller entity than Lundin. Six prosecutors from Sweden’s National Unit Against Organized Crime are in charge of the prosecution, including Henrik Attorps and Karolina Wieslander. Their presentation of the case will last until November 8th. The trial will continue for approximately two and a half years and conclude in early 2026.
The prosecutor raises the stakes for Orrön
Orrön Energy announced on 29 August that the prosecutor has increased his claim for forfeiture of criminal benefits from the company by SEK 1 billion, from SEK 1.381 billion to SEK 2.381 billion, or EUR 201 million. The market capitalization of Orrön stands at SEK 2.576 billion. The increased claim raises further doubts about AkerBP’s assertion that Orrön, which was split off from Lundin’s main business last year, will be capable of carrying Lundin’s liabilities and human rights responsibilities.
And Ian Lundin tries to frustrate the compensation claims against him
32 South Sudanese plaintiffs filed claims against Ian Lundin and Alex Schneiter for compensation of damages. In response, Ian Lundin requested the District Court on … to separate these claims from the war crimes trial and deal with them in 32 separate court cases. He furthermore requests that the court obliges the plaintiffs to pay his legal bills if their claims are not awarded. To prevent the risk that the South Sudanese cannot pay his lawyers’ invoices, Ian Lundin further demands that plaintiff deposits SEK 500.000 (EUR 45.000) and that otherwise their claims will be dismissed.
Ian Lundin argues that the plaintiffs’ claims are based on attacks that are not described in the indictment and will require lengthy consideration, which would unnecessarily prolong the trial.
In response, prosecutor Henrik Attorps wrote the court that the plaintiffs’ claims are based on attacks that are part of the trial. He further argues that an obligation to make a deposit would effectively deprive the plaintiffs of their right to claim damages.
Ian Lundin’s latest request will not interfere with the opening of the trial on September 5th.