French police have arrested a Norwegian neo-Nazi on suspicion of being on the brink of committing a “major terrorist act”, the words of French Interior Minister Manuel Valls.
Kristian Vikernes, known as Varg, has lived in France since 2009 with his wife and three children in the rural backwater of Correze.
It followed a 21-year prison sentence handed down in Norway in the 1990s for the murder of one of the members of a “black metal” group, Mayhem, stabbing them 20 times.
He was given an early conditional release after 16 years, and emigrated to France, where he has a far-right website that he uses to call on French voters to support the Front Nationale.
In Norway he also burned churches and engaged in various extreme right-wing activities. It is reported he downloaded Anders Breivik’s manifesto before he went on his killing spree.
Just days ago Vikernes’ wife legally bought four .22 rifles, leading the French to believe he was about to go into action.
A number of churches have been burned locally, and French police say they believe he may have had something to do with the attacks.