• Sweden's news in English

Teen tells court of abuse at elite Swedish school

5 Feb 2013, 07:29

Published: 05 Feb 2013 07:29 GMT+01:00

The five suspects, all of whom attended the Sigtuna Humanistiska läroverk (SSHL) boarding school north of Stockholm, maintained their innocence in the face of charges they perpetrated a long-running bullying campaign against a 17-year-old student.

On the first day of the trial at the Attunda District Court, the 17-year-old described in detail one of the times he was beaten by his fellow students.

He told of being forced to go down on his knees and keep his arms behind his back while the other students threw cheese balls at him that he was supposed to catch in his mouth.

"They threw them at my knees instead of at my head so that I didn't have a chance. For every ball I missed, I received a punch or a kick," he told the crowded courtroom, according to the Upsala Nya Tidning (UNT) newspaper.

He had bruises for two weeks following the incident, but tried to hide his injuries.

"I tried to show that I wasn't weak," he testified, according to the Expressen newspaper.

The five students were arrested in April 2012 for their role in what was described as a case of "severe and violent hazing" and face charges of aggravated assault.

Prosecutor Yngve Rydberg intends to prove that the older students beat the 17-year-old as punishment for failing to be sufficiently obedient when they demanded favours of him.

Late in 2011, Sweden's Schools Inspectorate (Skolinspektionen) slammed all three of Sweden's boarding schools – Sigtuna, Gränna and Lundsberg – over the schools' policies and attitudes toward hazing.

The agency has demanded the schools show what they're doing to combat hazing.

Sigtuna Humanistiska läroverk was formed in 1980 through a merger of Sigtunastiftelsens Humanistiska Läroverk and Sigtunaskolan and currently has an enrollment of about 580 students, two thirds of whom live at the school.

Story continues below…

In addition to the King, the elite school was also attended by well-known Swedes such as Olof Palme, banking executive Annika Falkengren, as well as members of the Wallenberg family.

The trial of the five students continues on Tuesday.

TT/The Local/dl

Follow The Local on Twitter

Your comments about this article

09:05 February 5, 2013 by RobinHood
I went to this school as a young man. Older students threw cheese balls at my knees too; I still have the scars. On Tuesdays, I was forced to wrestle with the school wolverine. Once a year every boy had to whip the naked headmaster with a riding crop while shouting "yippeeekiyaaa headmaster". On St Swithen's day, the whole school was expected to ritually flagellate themselves to within inches of their life while repetitively chanting the Albanian national anthem; I still dread the day Albania wins a medal at the Olympics and I have to hear that horrid song again. As for the incessant sodomy, well I have walked like Zeb Macahan ever since.

But, all in all, I found my schooldays to be a healthy experience which prepared me well for my future career in banking and finance.
10:35 February 5, 2013 by Logic_and_Reason
They are getting a new principal at Sigtuna. Things are about to go from bad to worse.
Today's headlines
Police: we can't protect Sweden from terrorists
Swedish police guarding the government building in Stockholm. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

Police: we can't protect Sweden from terrorists

0 minutes ago

After Sweden raised its terror threat alert to record high levels last week, more and more police officers on the beat warn that their weapons are not good enough to prevent a potential terror attack.

Swedish school: 'We have not banned Lucia'
Children celebrating Lucia in Stockholm. Photo: Jack Mikrut/TT

Swedish school: 'We have not banned Lucia'

1 hour ago

A Swedish nursery school has insisted it is not banning a beloved December tradition after a Facebook message posted by a furious parent went viral.

Winter in Sweden presented by Kungsberget
Stockholm's secret ski resort: Kungsberget
Catch air at the Kungsberget snowpark. File photo: Kungsberget

Stockholm's secret ski resort: Kungsberget

3 hours ago

Not everyone enjoys 8-hour car trips or expensive train tickets just to hit the slopes. That's why so many Stockholmers opt for Kungsberget – the majestic mountain just two hours away. The Local finds out more.

Winter in Sweden presented by Lofsdalen
Lofsdalen: The real Swedish wilderness
File photo: Lofsdalen

Lofsdalen: The real Swedish wilderness

3 hours ago

Sweden has more than a hundred ski resorts – but there’s only one where you can sip your very own cask of whisky on the top of a mountain peak. The Local finds out more about Lofsdalen – one of Sweden’s wildest resorts.

Will Swedish shoppers go nuts for Black Friday?
Shoppers at the Walmart chain in the US on Black Friday. Photo: Gunnar Rathbun/Invision for Walmart/AP Images

Will Swedish shoppers go nuts for Black Friday?

4 hours ago

Stores are pushing to convince Swedish shoppers to embrace US sales day 'Black Friday'. But will the phenomenon catch on?

The Local Recipes
How to make Swedish mulled wine: glögg
Swedish mulled wine served the traditional way. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

How to make Swedish mulled wine: glögg

6 hours ago

One drink in particular keeps the Swedes warm in winter: glögg. The beverage has been a Christmas tradition in Sweden since the 1890s. John Duxbury shares his favourite recipe with The Local.

Swedish 'knowledge hubs' to fight extremism
The new centres are aimed at discouraging Swedish youths from joining up with Islamic extremist groups such as Isis. Photo:AP/TT

Swedish 'knowledge hubs' to fight extremism

17 hours ago

Sweden's National Coordinator against Violent Extremism, Mona Sahlin, has announced a pilot programme to set up special centres in four cities in order to prevent the recruitment of people to extremist groups.

Eurovision 2016
Eurovision ticket chaos leaves fans fuming
Sweden's Eurovision 2015 winner Måns Zelmerlöw. Photo: Jessica Gow/TT

Eurovision ticket chaos leaves fans fuming

19 hours ago

Chaos reigned supreme on Thursday when tickets for next year's Eurovision Song Contest in Stockholm were released for sale and users experienced major technical problems with the ticketing website.

Refugee crisis
Five myths about Sweden's refugee crisis
Refugees at the Malmö branch of Sweden's Migration Agency. Photo: TT

Five myths about Sweden's refugee crisis

20 hours ago

UPDATED: Sweden's reputation for openness is being questioned as it tightens asylum rules and border controls. But how much are attitudes really changing? Here's a truth check on some of the more common misperceptions about how the refugee crisis is affecting the Nordic country.

10,000 Swedes tell Google to forget them
Google is assessing almost 10,000 privacy requests from Sweden. Photo: Paul Sakuma/Google

10,000 Swedes tell Google to forget them

21 hours ago

According to fresh data, almost 10,000 Swedes have lodged privacy requests with American tech giant Google for search removals but only around 41 percent have been approved.

Sponsored Article
11 reasons students pick Stockholm University
POLL: Swedes back new asylum rules
Sponsored Article
Top five UK weekend getaways from Sweden
Five weirdest Christmas attacks on Sweden's famous straw goat
Sponsored Article
After Paris: 'The war is not only against Isis'
Blog updates

25 November

So What Does An Ambassador Do? (The Diplomatic Dispatch) »

"I know that my mum is super proud that I’m an Ambassador. But if you asked..." READ »


20 November

Editor’s blog, November 20th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hi readers, It has been a long and busy week for The Local as we reported on..." READ »

Five myths about Sweden's refugees
Sponsored Article
How Stockholm solved a startup’s housing crisis
How did this missing Swedish cat turn up in southern France?
Sponsored Article
Swedish researchers find Ice Age 'missing link'
Sponsored Article
Lofsdalen: The real Swedish wilderness
Sponsored Article
Beaches, bikes, and buds: studying in Malmö
Would you eat this Swedish pizza?
People-watching: November 25th
What do Swedes want for Christmas?
GUIDE: How to help refugees if you live in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Sweden must combat extremist 'mirage'
Mystery ice circle in Swedish river
IN PICTURES: New royal winter snaps of Sweden's Princess Estelle
Property of the week: Kungsholmen, Stockholm
Sponsored Article
How to figure out healthcare abroad
Stockholm film festival's top movies
Ola Ericson/imagebank.sweden.se
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: the new epicentre of global leadership
Susanne Walström/imagebank.sweden.se
Sponsored Article
‘Food choices in Sweden destroy forests in Asia’
People-watching: November 20th-22nd
Swedish King calls for bathtub ban
Analysis & Opinion
Why you should care about Sweden raising its terror threat level
Sponsored Article
The cheapest and fastest way to transfer money
Stockholm's best international bars
Is this the best warning sign ever?
Why are more Swedes getting fat?
Sweden's tribute to Paris victims
What is Sweden's sexiest name?
VIDEO: Madonna's emotional tribute to Paris victims at Stockholm gig
Nine of the merriest Swedish Christmas fairs
Sweden cashes in on new kronor banknotes
jobs available
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: