• Sweden edition
 

Court frees accused rapist: 'no' isn't enough

Published: 28 Nov 2012 08:05 GMT+01:00
Updated: 28 Nov 2012 08:05 GMT+01:00

"She wasn't able to describe either violence or threats, and therefore it's not rape according to the letter of the law," prosecutor Barbro Brännlund told the local Nya Wermlands-Tidningen (NWT).

The woman reported the rape to police in Karlstad about a year and a half ago, explaining that an acquaintance had forced her to have sex with him against her will.

She told the man "no" repeatedly and did her best to hold her legs together, the woman told investigators.

But when the man refused to stop, the woman "shut down", allowing the man to carry out the act.

As there was no forensic evidence in the case, it became of matter of one's word against the other's.

While the court explained that it found the woman's version of events credible, the man was ultimately freed because it "hadn't been shown beyond a reasonable doubt" that the man had forced the woman to have sex with him.

Brännlund is concerned that women in Sweden may not understand what's required for to secure a rape conviction.

"Even if a no is a no, it's not enough to just say it for it to be rape," she told the paper.

"In my mind, there's no doubt whatsoever that the woman perceived this as an attack. But the man never realized that."

The case almost never made it to court because evidence was so thin and the prosecutor has signalled she's unlikely to appeal the court's ruling.

TT/The Local/dl

Follow The Local on Twitter

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

09:13 November 28, 2012 by RobinHood
Once you get past the provocative and misleading headline interpretation of the prosecutor's rationale, this matter was decided on the evidence. She said one thing, he said another; and there wasn't a scrap of evidence proving who told the truth and who didn't, or what was understood or misunderstood by the couple.

Most first-world countries agree, this type of "he said, she said" cases are not enough to prove rape beyond the necessary reasonable doubt. There are some in Sweden who want to reverse the burden of proof so that the rapist must prove the victim consented, rather than the victim having to prove that he/she didn't. One presumes that involves filling in a legal document before the act. How romantic!
10:07 November 28, 2012 by texaslass
I agree that this headline is misleading. It seems that the trial was followed in accordance with the law. However, we do not know the whole story.

The article does not mention anything about him ripping her clothes off, so maybe she took her clothing off willingly. I think if a woman is uncomfortable with a man, it is best to keep the clothing on, then there are no misunderstandings. This requires some level of common sense.
10:26 November 28, 2012 by engagebrain
Was the man deaf ?

So to be able to complain about rape you have to say no and get beaten up.
11:31 November 28, 2012 by NyDag
Great, I'll use this argument next time i'm helping myself to the tills at the local ICA. "no isn't enough"
11:40 November 28, 2012 by ThePassenger
So, if I don't misinterpret the Swedish laws, if the rapist holds a knife or a gun the victim should still resist as much as possible so she can provide a stabbing or a gunshot as evidence? Otherwise the weapon threat will still be a matter of "his word against hers"?
15:23 November 28, 2012 by Uncle
ThePassenger

"So, if I don't misinterpret the Swedish laws"

I believe that you do. Presence of weapon + intent constitutes danger to life by definition. Presence of a PERSON does not constitute a threat.

The above case is very much alike a theoretical case where you run to the police and claim that a larger than you person came to you and told you to give him your money and after temporary disagreement you gave him the cash.

At the same time you cannot prove that you indeed had the money (no receipts, or recordings from a cash machine = no injuries to the "raped") or that he threatened you in any other way except just being physically larger than you. Your word should not put him behind bars for 10 years for robbery.

And yes - it is better to release 100 criminals than to put in an innocent person in a democratic and advanced society.
16:42 November 28, 2012 by k2kats
Outrageous. "No" means no.... the first time it's said. If the man had no malicious intent, he would have listened and stopped.

To penalize the woman for having a classic response among rape victims is an absolute travesty.
20:16 November 28, 2012 by Svensksmith
As others have mentioned, we do not know the whole story. On general principal, however, no means no. Period.
23:08 November 28, 2012 by dizzymoe33
No means No and that is all there is to it!! Stupid Swedish laws when it comes to rape.
10:35 November 29, 2012 by clearandpresenttruth
Hmmm... Very interesting news.

I would imagine the Assange case will now be treated in the same manor then.

...or do the standard convenient Svensk double standards also apply?

Swedish Transparency at it's best : )
22:29 November 30, 2012 by theobserver
This is very strange. I heard that, in Sweden, if, during intercourse, the woman says he wants the man out, he should immediately obey, else he will be charged for rape. The case at hand seems to be in contradiction with the strict rape laws.
Today's headlines
Bildt lays out four steps to Gaza peace
Photos: TT

Bildt lays out four steps to Gaza peace

Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt stated that there are four steps to achieving peace in Gaza, and that it begins with removing the blockade - which has "played into Hamas' hands". READ  

Malmström snags EU commissioner post again

Malmström snags EU commissioner post again

Cecilia Malmström has been nominated to be the European Commissioner for another five years, Sweden's prime minister announced on Thursday. READ  

Two to hospital after Stockholm fire

Two to hospital after Stockholm fire

Two people were taken to hospital in the early hours of Thursday morning after a fire began in their central Stockholm apartment. READ  

Salmonella prompts Coop hamburger recall
Photo: Jim Cole/TT

Salmonella prompts Coop hamburger recall

Swedish supermarket chain Coop has recalled its in-store brand of fresh hamburger meat after a routine check revealed traces of salmonella in the meat. READ  

What's On in Sweden
Photo: Roger Vikström/TT

What's On in Sweden

It's Pride Week in Stockholm. Find out more about the celebrations (including the biggest Pride Parade in Scandinavia) as well as plenty of other activities in Sweden's three biggest cities. READ  

Sweden resumes aid to 'anti-gay Uganda'
Hillevi Engström and protesters against Uganda's anti-gay laws. Photos: Maja Suslin/Ben Curtis/TT

Sweden resumes aid to 'anti-gay Uganda'

Sweden has resumed sending development aid funds to Uganda, after suspending payouts back in March due to "anti-gay legislation". READ  

The Local List
Top ten coffee spots in central Stockholm
Fanny feels at home at the Blå Lotus. Photo: Isabela Vrba

Top ten coffee spots in central Stockholm

If you're wondering where to grab your next cappucino, then wonder no more. The Local talked to the locals in Stockholm and found out the best spots in town for the ultimate fika experience. READ  

Swedish neo-Nazis join fight in Ukraine
The Azov task force. Photo: Sergei Chuzavkov/TT

Swedish neo-Nazis join fight in Ukraine

Four Swedes are fighting with the Ukrainian task force Azov - a squad which flies a flag with Nazi symbols and, according to one Swedish soldier, fights for "a white Ukraine". READ  

Swedish elk get one-way ticket to Denmark
The elk in this picture are not the ones that will be sent to Denmark. Photo: The Uppsala Koala

Swedish elk get one-way ticket to Denmark

Up to a dozen elk will be transported from Sweden to Denmark in an effort to help maintain local marshlands. READ  

Sweden worst in EU at getting foreigners jobs
Photo: Henrik Trygg/Imagebank Sweden

Sweden worst in EU at getting foreigners jobs

UPDATED: Swedish citizens are the most likely to be employed in the EU, but Sweden is among the very worst when it comes to getting non-EU citizens into work. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Lifestyle
Stockholm Pride kicks off
Analysis
The top six ways the US and Sweden differ
National
Swedish youth suicides hit 25-year high
National
Politician reported for selling 'negro ball'
National
Police turn blind eye to Swedish 'slave trade'
Blog updates

27 July

Approaching Stockholm (Around Sweden in a kayak) »

"I woke up in the comfort of my own little cabin on Eva and Rolf’s boat, it was 7:30am and I was feeling a bit groggy after a couple of beers with all the lovely locals the night before. The previous day had really taken its toll on my body and I was very stiff and..." READ »

 

24 July

Sharing our Pride: Celebrating Love & the LGBT Community! (Stockholm in my American Heart) »

"It’s mid- July in Stockholm, and with much of the city on vacation, things can seem a little quiet – the streets, the bus, and the grocery store. One thing that has not paused for a summer break, though, is preparation for Stockholm’s Pride Festival, which will take place from July 28 to August 2...." READ »

 
 
 
Gallery
Stockholm Pride: Allsång på Skansen with Conchita Wurst
Skatteverket
Sponsored Article
Introducing... ID cards and permits in Stockholm
Gallery
People-watching, June 26th - 28th. Get inside Stockholm's hottest nightclubs
Gallery
Top ten Swedish taboos
Society
Seven-year-old Swede cycles to Berlin
Politics
'Gaza conflict needs help, not empty rhetoric'
Society
Swedes voted 'most beautiful' in the Nordics
Business & Money
Sweden demands EU clarity on Bitcoin tax
National
Swedish organic sales enjoy 'amazing' growth
Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT
Society
What's On in Sweden
Gallery
People-watching July 23
National
Swedish cops elect not to shoot 'angry elks'
Business & Money
New alcohol retail rules threaten micro-breweries
Gallery
People-watching Båstad
Business & Money
Sweden falls to third in global innovation index
Society
Swedish ornithologists keep webcam watch
Photo: Andreas Nordström/Image Bank Sweden
Gallery
Top ten Swedish beach hot spots
Tech
Swedish Wiki vet sets new content record
Photo: Fastighetsbyrån
Lifestyle
In Pictures: The Local's Property of the Week
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Your finances in Stockholm
Sponsored Article
Introducing... Housing in Stockholm
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

745
jobs available
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions
Swedish Down Town Consulting & Productions is an innovative business company which provides valuable assistance with the Swedish Authorities, Swedish language practice and general communications. Call 073-100 47 81 or visit:
www.swedishdowntown.com
If you want to drink, that’s your business.
If you want to stop, we can help.

Learn more about English-language Alcoholics Anonymous in Sweden. No dues. No fees. Confidentiality assured.
AA-EUROPE.ORG/SWEDEN
PSD Media
PSD Media is marketing company that offers innovative solutions for online retailers. We provide modern solutions that help increase traffic and raise conversion. Visit our site at:
http://psdmedia.se