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Threats against Kåre Torvholm and his family

Kåre Torvholm (1941-2000) was a central person in the struggle against corruption and abuse of power in Norway. He was a fisherman who disclosed among other things fraudulent reports from the fishing industry and giving the parliament wrongful information. The latter lead to the fishermen getting less sick leave than they otherwise could have gotten. On January 17, 2000, the local newspaper Sunnmørsposten published an article written by journalist Kjetil Haanes. The article had the title "Ingen reagerer på drapstruslar" (No one reacts to death threats). The text was accompnied by a photo og Torvholm's daughter Katrin, her two months old daughter Sara and Katrin's mother in law, Anne Lise Frøystad. The following was the introduction to the article:

"Katrin Torvholm is terrified by the prospect that her two months old daughter will be victim to a planned accident. Death threats against Sara and two cousins have been mediated. Katrin has got a feeling that no one takes the threats seriously, as they concern the family of the controversial resident of Moltustranda, Kåre Torvholm."

The article continues:

"- Because this concerns the Torvholm family, no one reacts. The attitude seems to be that we deserve what happens now. We feel unprotected, Katrin Torvholm says.

It was on the night before December 19 that a friend of Kåre Torvholm who is in a central position, called Kåre and told that orders had been issued to neutralize Kåre Torvholm and two of his close collaborators.

The message was unambiguous. Kåre Torvholm was the first one to be taken, but not directly. In a matter of short time, Torvholm's three grandchildren, Sara, Kristoffer and Andreas, would become victims of an accident.

No empty threats
The conversation was taped. The day after, the content was presented to Torvholm's children. They took the warning very seriously. Katrin rejects the notion that it is a matter of empty threats, or that confused people are behind the threats.

- I know the person who called and warned us, and I know who are behind the death threats. These are no bulshit people.

Later, the tape has been played to the mayor, sheriff, members of formannskapet [central municipal politicians] and other people in the region. The only person who has contacted Torvholm afterwards is sheriff Odd Kulø in Ulstein og Hareid. The others have been silent.
This shows a frightening attitude. Instead of support, we have been told that we could not expect anything else as we came from the Torvholm family.

Constant fear
The threats have turned Katrin Torvholm's life upside down.

- I have accustomed myself to much, and I have experienced sundry threats and harassemnt towards my father and the rest of the family. I have managed to live with that. It is something totally different when the third generation also suffers.

- I cannot sleep at night and I need people around me all the time. I am constantly watching out for cars and unexpected sounds. And I fear that I might harm someone innocent due to my fear. It is a terrible experience, Katrin Torvholm says.

Frightening and surreal
Mother in law Anne Lise Frøystad supports Katrin and the rest of the Torvholm family. She finds the situation both frightening and surreal.
- It sounds so unlikely that things like these can happen in our peaceful part of the world. In my opinion, we cannot disregard such direct threats.
- I see that those whom the threats are directed at take them seriously and are scared. That should make others awake too, she says.

Controversial activity
Kåre Torvholm has for years been fighting against economical criminality within the fishing industry as well as other places. He has got many potential enemies, especially after he started naming people placed high within the system and accuse them of various kinds of criminalty.
The imformation has been spread by faxto a l arge number of organisations and prominent persons in Norway and abroad. Recently, the information has also been published on the Internet. This includes information that concern Norwegian intelligence activities.
Torvholm's activity is quite controversial, and many people would have preferred Torvholm to be quiet.

Proud of her father
Anne Lise Frøystad says that the threats demonstrate that itis likely that there is substance in some of the material presented by Kåre Torvholm.
- It has earlier turned out that Kåre was right, even though few have belived him from the outset. I wish that someone would do the job of examining whether Kåre's allegations are true.
Katrin Torvholm says that it is hard to be Kåre Torvholm's daughter. She would have paid a lot to have a normal family life, but she is still proud of her father's fight.
- Even though I do not always agree with him, I have always supported his fight. I also know his good contacts in different environments well. It is a pity that few people dare to stand up to get the truth out, she says.
Katrin has also several times experienced that her family has been used to deter others from meddling in controversial issues.
- See how it has turned out for the Torvholm family, is a typical message, she says. Mother in law Anne Lise Frøystad says that the Torvholm family has suffered enough, and thinks it is to bad that the third generation now also seems to suffer.
- I fear for my grandchild, and it is frightening to see that few are concerned because Sara is a child in the Torvholm family. It should not be like that, Frøystad says."

On 21. June, 2000, the local Radio station Radio Modum aired the first program in the series "Det skjulte Norge" ("The veiled Norway"). During the program, Radio Modum played a tape that demonstrated how Torvhom was received when he called the prime minister's office to tell about death threats against his grandchildren.

Torvholm soon realised that the phone call had been abrupted. Torvholm once again called the telephone central at the prime minister's office and was redirected to secretary Inger Andersen. He was then told that he had called Oslo Renholdsverk (Oslo Renovation Department). This conversation was soon brought to an end and Torvholm once more called the prime minister's office. He was once more redirected to secretary Inger Andersen. The same voice that just had presented herself as 'Oslo Renholdsverk', now vas the voice of secretary Inger Andersen at the prime minister's office.

Erik Strand 19. September 2016