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Sweden to abolish expiry date for murder

Sweden to abolish expiry date for murder

Published: 08 Oct 2009 10:22 GMT+02:00
Updated: 08 Oct 2009 10:22 GMT+02:00

Sweden's government has proposed abolishing the statute of limitations for crimes that can lead to life imprisonment. Under current laws, suspects for crimes that include murder, genocide and major acts of terrorism can not be prosecuted if 25 years have elapsed since the crime was committed.

In its submission to the Council on Legislation (Lagrådet), the government calls for the new law to be retroactive, meaning that murders committed by adult perpetrators in the last quarter century and onwards will no longer have an expiry date for prosecution, Svenska Dagbladet reports.

"I'm convinced that people would find it reprehensible if a murderer was to come along after 25 years and confess to a murder. No matter when the crime as committed, the perpetrator should be held to account," Centre Party justice spokesman Johan Linander told the newspaper.

Citing improvements in DNA technology, the government also wants evidence for crimes covered in the bill to be retained for 70 years, as opposed to the current 30 year limit.

With opposition justice experts also welcoming the proposal, the bill is expected to pass into law in mid-2010, a few months before the 25th anniversary of the still unsolved murder of Swedish prime minister Olof Palme.

Palme was gunned down while walking home from the cinema in central Stockholm on the evening of February 28th, 1986.

Two years after the shooting, petty thief Christer Pettersson was arrested and convicted for Palme’s killing, but the case was later overturned on appeal.

No other suspect has ever been brought to trial in the case.

TT/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

12:19 October 8, 2009 by Freyja14
They should put that guy away for life who sexually assaulted his grandchildren. If you think about it he basically took away those poor kids lives forever by what he did. Child molesters, rapists and murders should be locked up for life!
12:23 October 8, 2009 by Gwrhyr
The assassin should come out with a book called "How I would have done it (If I had done it)".
13:26 October 8, 2009 by Beynch
@Trowbridge H. Ford

You're nuts! You don't really beleive this. We are all grateful for OP's demise, not that he was murdered, but the he was taken out of the count. While the change in Swedish law is welcome, it should have nothing to do with this, misguided, west-hating, swedish mistake, whose errors Sweden is still suffering the ill effects from.
14:17 October 8, 2009 by Beynch
@Trowbridge H. Ford

Your invective appears to have been fetched from various leftist organs, and you seem to have an axe to grind. Wonder what it is? Although I could guess. I'm not grateful for OP's assassination either like I said. Only that he is no longer around to spread his offensive venom. I am grateful that knee-jerk liberal Sweden has come to its senses and is set to abolish the statute of limitations for murder.
20:08 October 8, 2009 by BCR
I too am "grateful that knee-jerk liberal Sweden has come to its senses and is set to abolish the statute of limitations for murder."

Lets hope they do the same for child molestation and other sex crimes against minors too.
01:52 October 9, 2009 by DavidtheNorseman
The Wikipedia article on the Olof Palme assassination is quite good. Mr. Ford tries to make it sound as if the only plausible theory is his (and I don't find it that plausible), but in this he is quite wrong. What about the South African's who claim they did it? The European Workers Party fellow who told his friends he did it? Shall we forget the claim by the Red Army Faction they did it?

I have no idea who committed the horrible murder of Mr. Palme (the mistaken identity possibility isn't at all implausible in this World were "Time and Chance happen to all men" either.....) but definitely on that crime there ought to be no statute of limitations.
04:40 October 9, 2009 by Weekend_warrior
I for one definitely welcome this new law. I didn't realize that Sweden had a statute on murder...ridiculous. They need to abolish a statute on rape as well, just like the USofA. What else has no statute...oh crimes against the state, and well many.

But I imagine one day all of Sweden's laws will be brought up to date for the 21st century.
19:05 October 9, 2009 by Coalbanks
The reason for a statute of limitations may be valid. Eye witnesses are notoriously unreliable evan weeks after an event. Decades later their testimony is more myth than reality as they rehearse & edit their memories which are corrupted by other events & the testimony of others. Witnesses die, lose mental abilities, physical evidence is lost, even DNA degrades over time. As for the changes to what is/not Socially Acceptable/ Politically Corect - these change considerabley with more/less severe penalties enforced now than at the time of the deed.
02:25 October 10, 2009 by here for the summer
@coalbanks .. your have the only relevant comment on the article . The reason for a statue was because evidence ages .. The reason given for the change is the advance in DNA technology and video etc. Both can be preserved digitally forever.
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