The retrial of six individuals sentenced in the infamous Guðmundur and Geirfinnur case decades ago began today, RÚV reports. In February of this year, the state prosecutor requested a full acquittal of the individuals sentenced in the infamous case, and the trial began today.
Davíð Þór Björgvinsson, the case prosecutor, is building his plea on the verdict of a committee which ruled to reopen the case last year. Davíð Þór argues that new evidence, including the diaries of Tryggvi Rúnars Leifsson and Kristján Viðar Víðarsson, two of the six people convicted in the case, call for a full acquittal of the six individuals. He also adds that the harsh treatment of the accused during the handling of the case was not considered in the original ruling.
The case revolves around the disappearance of two men, Guðmundur Einarsson and Geirfinnur Einarsson (no relation), in 1974. Six people were ultimately convicted of the murders of these two men and received prison sentences of various lengths, up to 17 years. The convictions were based on confessions extracted from the individuals during lengthy interrogations. Their validity as evidence has since been refuted, as records show the accused were held in extended solitary confinement, drugged, and in some cases tortured.
The case is well known outside of Iceland. In 2014, it was the subject of a BBC programme called The Reykjavík Confessions, while in 2017 a documentary on the topic was released on Netflix, titled Out of Thin Air.