RÚV reports that an Icelandic supreme court judge owned shares worth tens of millions of ISK in Glitnir Bank during the years leading up to the banking collapse in 2008. According to RÚV, he sold the shares at a profit in 2007.
The salary of supreme court judges, who are hired for life, is among the highest in the public sector in order to ensure their independence. If a judge becomes the owner of stock, that ownership should be reported to the Committee on Judicial Work, and if those shares are worth more than ISK 3 million (USD 27,000, EUR 25,000), the judge needs the committee’s approval for owning the stock.
In a report to be aired on the TV news analysis program Kastljós tonight, it is claimed that the committee has no record of the judge having reported the sale of the shares in 2007. At that time, he is said to have sold them for ISK 44 million (USD 397,000, EUR 397,000). After that, he reportedly invested through Íslandsbanki private banking for almost ISK 60 million (USD 541,000, EUR 505,000). The committee, it appears, has no record of that being reported either.
Committee Chair Hjördís Hákonardóttir told RÚV the committee simply expects judges to report their assets.