More on Björgólfur and the Russian mafia

After this article was published I have been contacted and asked to tell more about the Russian mafia connections to Björgóflur Thor and Björgólfur Guðmundsson. I did some digging, and found some more details on how things where in Russia back in the 90’s when Björgólfur Jr and Sr were there.

I have this after very reliable sources that will not be named.

The first rumours about the Russian mafia came back in early/mid 1990’s. Björgólfur Thor was living in and Iceland at that time, but he was often seen at various restaurants in Iceland like La Primavera, a fancy Italian restaurant, dining with a few Russians, well dressed men that looked to those who saw this (various sources) “strange”. Not trying to stereotype or make things fit into a story, but this was the general feeling people who saw them, that they looked out of place. Since Björgólfur Thor had a business in Russia, people asked what the Russians where doing in Iceland. They came quite a few times to Iceland, and rumours had already started to surface that Björgólfur Thor and his father where involved with the mafia in St. Petersburg.

The reason for that is simple, at that time, and still today, if you want to do business in Russia you have to deal with the mafia. This was later confirmed by Björgólfur Guðmundsson in an interview a few years later.

The story about how the mafia got in touch with the Bravo brewery and Björgólfur Thor, is according to my sources from Björgólfur Thor himself. It goes like this:

When they started the factory the biggest mafia in St. Petersburg (or in Russia) came to see them at the Bravo brewery and told them that they wanted a percentage of the company. Björgólfur said yes, not a problem. Then he gave them more money than they wanted. That surprised them a lot, but Björgólfur said that in return he would get their protection from rivals if needed.

Shortly after this deal was made, the rival mafia gang came to visit and ask for the same thing, protection fee. Björgóflur said yes, not a problem. Told them to come to a meeting in the evening to discuss it. When the rival mafia gang came to the meeting they where met by Björgólfur and the gang that struck the deal with Björgólfur first. Fully armed with machine guns and ready.

What happened after that, a shootout and killings, or if they just went home, did not come with the story. One can only guess, but after this, at least one rival factory burned down, and two men from the Baltika brewery were murdered. One shot in his Mercedes Benz in broad daylight, and the other one at his home.

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