A former Norweigian cabinet member was sentenced to five years in prison for exploiting his position to sexually abuse three asylum seekers for six years, according to the BBC.
Svein Ludvigsen, 72, was found guilty of abusing the three men while he was the regional governor of Troms, a county north of the Arctic Circle, between 2011 and 2017. The men say that they believed they would either be deported or be granted permanent residency depending on how they reacted to his demands for sexual favors.
The men, now aged 25, 26 and 34, told the court that they first met Ludvigsen when he was Troms governor and that he offered them housing and jobs in exchange for sexual favours.
The abuse took place in Ludvigsen’s home and country house, in hotel rooms and in his office, they said. –BBC
One of the victims was just 17 at the time, while another reportedly has a “mild intellectual disability.”
The charge describes how Ludvigsen should have approached a slightly mentally retarded man in his home at an institution that was subject to the county governor’s supervision, and that he should “have led him to believe he had the power and authority to give and deprive him of his citizenship”. –NRK.no (translated)
Ludvigsen, who maintains his innocence and has vowed to appeal, admitted to having sex with one of the men – however he said that it was consensual, and that he did not have sex with the other two men. He also admitted that he lied to the police when questioned.
Ludvigsen, who was arrested in January, 2018, was ordered to pay damages to the men of approximately $87,000 US. The conservative politician was the minister of fisheries from 2001 to 2005, and was the goveror of Troms from 2006 to 2014 when he retired from politics, according to the BBC.