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Vilks murder plot suspects acquitted

Vilks murder plot suspects acquitted

Published: 20 Jan 2012 15:27 GMT+01:00
Updated: 20 Jan 2012 15:27 GMT+01:00

Three men accused of plotting to kill Swedish artist Lars Vilks were acquitted of the charges in Gothenburg on Friday, but were nevertheless convicted for weapons violations.

The prosecutor had sought to have the men sentenced to three years in prison, but the Gothenburg District Court ordered the three men released from custody following the conclusion of the trial in December.

“As they were released following the hearing, it wasn't unexpected that the main charges were thrown out,” prosecutor Agnetha Hilding Qvarnström told TT on Friday after the verdict was announced.

However, she added that she had no regrets about filing charges against the men.

“They were held in remand for a long time and they ordered held in remand on several occasions. The matter was tested in court and I believe there was reason to indict them,” she said.

Vilks has faced numerous death threats and was the target of another suspected assassination plot since his drawing of the Prophet Muhammad as a dog was first published by a Swedish regional newspaper in 2007, illustrating an editorial on the importance of freedom of expression.

The three men released Wednesday were arrested along with a fourth man, no longer considered a suspect, by an elite counter-terrorism unit in Gothenburg.

The unit had evacuated hundreds of people from the Röda Sten gallery that was hosting the September art fair "after concluding that there was a threat that could endanger lives or health or cause serious damage".

Vilks had initially said on his blog that he would attend the art fair although he did not in the end.

The three suspects -- one Somali citizen and two Swedes in their mid-20s – were all carrying knives when they were arrested and were, according to the prosecution, planning to stab Vilks to death.

Press reports have suggested that the trio had ties to a Somali Islamist movement al-Shabaab, but Hilding Qvarnström told AFP in December that she had no information to support such claims.

She said she has yet to decide whether or not she will appeal the ruling.

“I now want to read the verdict and the court's reasoning in peace and quiet. I have three weeks to decide,” she told TT.

TT/AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

15:52 January 20, 2012 by Svensksmith
Probably because Mossad set them up.
17:08 January 20, 2012 by Rod Munch
"...and two Swedes." ...LMAO! Ok, like anyone who knows Swedish media is going to believe that.

Anyways, it's hard to believe that these idiots weren't convicted when they practically admitted that they did it. Oh wait, this is Sweden so yeah, I do believe it. Didn't the police find one of their jackets at the scene? Or am I confusing that with another one of the Swedish terrorist stories?
17:21 January 20, 2012 by majskyking
Simply another case of Sweden's mollycoddling Jihadists - you people are soooooo forgiving - especially to Muslims.

I really can't complain too much, I guess .....first of all I'm only about one-sixteenth Swedish, secondly, I live in the U.S.A. ....the former "UNITED States of America" - now, not so fekkin' United and soon to fall victim to Sharia law.

There are times when I'm glad to be 77-years of age ..... only a few more years to put up with all this bull caca and then I'm outta' here! Feel sad for my kids, grand kids, your kids, your grand kids and the future generations.

I need a drink!!

Bob King majskyking at g mail dot com - correspond, if you like.
20:03 January 20, 2012 by bcterry
Bob,

From one old fart to another, have a look at what is happening in your country, it's unbelievable how this crap can happen in the U.S.

Google,

"Dearborn Michigan: 3 Christians Arrested For Reaching out to Muslims!"

"Sharia Comes to Michigan"

"I need a drink!!"

You might need another after you check out those links. :)
21:12 January 20, 2012 by canuk
Sweden spent decades building their society, developing the very best of everything and ensuring that its citizens prosper....fast foward and in 20 years they have managed to destroy everything they have worked thousands of years to build. This becuase a virus is infesting the country, a virus that multiplies faster then anything growing locally. The goverment is allowing into this country backwards peoples that in thousands of years have done nothing but casue war and famine so that they can spread the virus here. the first step is malmö, it will only get worse there with all the weak minded swedes doing nothing to stop it. The police force is a joke, celebrations in the news were made for the first muslim headscarf wearing police officer. Fantastic. I have over half my life to go, i know for sure that sweden wont be my final destination.
23:27 January 20, 2012 by Carbarrister
A botched investigation leads to a botched prosecution. Pathetic. I hope Sweden has disbarrment for prosecutors.
05:28 January 21, 2012 by Grokh
yay lets release them and wait for them to use those knives to threaten and rob or rape people.

or even actually succeed in blowing stuff up and then maybe arrest them for a year -_-x
09:02 January 21, 2012 by Rey Stockholm
No point in complaining, you have to vote out the politicians who allow this to happen. Its a strange thing to say but nothing will happen until the right wing vote goes up and immigrants controlled as they did in Netherlands
00:50 January 22, 2012 by jpmaher
Allahu akbar!
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