Leak Affair: Minister Threatened to Investigate Police

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Leak Affair: Minister Threatened to Investigate Police

Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir.

Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir. Photo: Geir Ólafsson.

Former Chief of Police Stefán Eiríksson maintains that Minister of the Interior Hanna Birna Kristjánsdóttir had repeatedly attempted to interfere with the police’s investigation of the leak of confidential information from her ministry, threatening to have the police’s and state prosecutor’s work methods in the affair investigated upon the investigation’s completion.

This was revealed in the third letter sent to the minister by Ombudsman of Alþingi, the Icelandic parliament, Tryggvi Gunnarsson, published yesterday.

In the 23-page letter, Tryggvi asks Hanna Birna to explain why she repeatedly asked Stefán questions about the investigation, interfering with it, while serving as the minister responsible for judicial affairs and the chief of police’s superior, ruv.is reports.

The letter states that Stefán had described to Tryggvi how Hanna Birna asked about the investigation’s extent, the confiscation of her assistant’s computer and the timing of the questioning of her assistant, among other things.

“I ask … for an explanation as to how … this coincides with the unwritten rule on special competence, taking into account laws and standpoints intended to guarantee independence and objectivity of those responsible for the case’s investigation,” the letter reads.

Hanna Birna’s assistant Gísli Freyr Valdórsson was charged on August 15 for having leaked the information. Hanna Birna announced that she would not resign but shoulder responsibility by letting her assistant go and relocating her judicial duties to another ministry.

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