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Ex-Sweden Democrat MP involuntarily committed

Ex-Sweden Democrat MP involuntarily committed

Published: 24 Oct 2011 12:26 GMT+02:00
Updated: 24 Oct 2011 12:26 GMT+02:00

Independent Swedish MP William Petzäll, who left the Sweden Democrats amidst a battle with substance abuse, has been involuntarily committed to treatment after a recent hospitalization.

Petzäll, 23, announced in late September he was leaving the Sweden Democrats, but planned to remain in parliament as an independent.

At the time, he said he wanted to continue to use his seat in the Riksdag to "push my pet issue and increase awareness. To develop more concrete measures to help young alcoholics and drug addicts."

But Petzäll was forcibly committed into care last Monday to prevent an overdose after he was taken to a Gothenburg-area hospital by ambulance, the Aftonbladet newspaper reported.

Petzäll nevertheless appealed the initial decision to have him committed, which was taken by the local social services board in accordance with Sweden’s Care of Alcoholics, Drug Abusers and Abusers of Volatile Solvents Act (Lagen om vård åt missbrukare – LVM).

However, the Gothenburg Administrative Court (Förvaltningsrätten) ruled on Friday that Petzäll should be forced into institutional care, despite his protests that he was aware of his addiction problems and was working to deal with them.

According to Aftonbladet, the 23-year-old MP has struggled with addiction to Valium and methadone, a drug often used to treat heroine addicts.

Petzäll first took a time-out from his political activities in February after a drunken outburst in Trelleborg in southern Sweden resulted in him spending the night in jail to sober up.

According to Swedish law, a person can be committed involuntarily following a report to social services from a doctor, relative, or social worker.

The law is applied if the addicts' physical or mental health is deemed to be at risk, if they are in danger of destroying their lives, or if they are thought to have the capacity to seriously injure themselves or others.

The initial institutionalisation can last up to six months, at which point the case is reviewed.

The Local/dl (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:28 October 24, 2011 by Grokh
they let any moron be a politician these days...
13:40 October 24, 2011 by StockholmSam
@Grokh,

What do you mean 'they'? Nobody 'lets' people be politicians. It takes voters.
13:50 October 24, 2011 by DAVID T
I hope he gets better - I'll vote for him
15:03 October 24, 2011 by cowboykodp
They should "involuntarily commit" all SD politicians and the people who still vote for them after all these revelations.
17:45 October 24, 2011 by prince T
Anti immigrant sweden will rather vote racist addicts into power than vote a genuine person.
21:04 October 24, 2011 by dizzy09
I hope he stays there...FOREVER!
21:15 October 24, 2011 by zooeden
At least he´s not immigrant!!!
23:28 October 24, 2011 by diegoveggie
i hope he meets a big dark man inside there that take care of his needs
23:29 October 24, 2011 by johnoleson
For all you anti SD's out there, don't you know, SD is part of the political spectrum. If you don't like SD, don't vote for them. If they seem to be gaining power realign your own political party to counteract them. But understand this, they only exist as a reaction to what the prevailing forces in Sweden have done to this fair land.
18:14 October 25, 2011 by alarik36
Han är en känslig kille som har haft otur. Han är ingen hårding. Han har hamnat i en miljö, politiken, som hos alla partier präglas av "äta eller ätas". Det har blivit för mycket för honom som är en glad, intelligent och snäll kille. Jag har träffat honom flera gånger. Det enda jag inte gillar hos honom är att han använde brun-utan-sol i ansiktet för mycket innan valet. Det var nästan groteskt.
21:45 October 25, 2011 by johnoleson
@ alarik36,

I'm sure he has faced the ugly side of politics that most don't even know exists and his young age made him even more vulnerable.
18:17 October 28, 2011 by james_g
@ cowboykodp - if you're talking about involuntarily committing politicians at all then, based on their actions - especially (but by no means exclusively) when in power and especially (but by no means exclusively) when in positions of 'authority' - I reckon you should be targeting about 87,5% of ALL politicians, world-wide! Perhaps more...
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