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Forced 'infidelity check' not rape: Swedish court

Published: 21 Feb 2013 09:36 GMT+01:00

The man had previously been convicted of rape by a lower court after he tore off his girlfriend's clothes and forced his fingers into her genitals on suspicion that she had been unfaithful, legal trade publication Dagens Juridik reported.

The lower court had also convicted the man of several other charges related to repeated assaults and threats directed against girlfriend in a relationship that had been marked by jealousy and suspicion.

But upon reviewing the case, the Svea Court of Appeal threw out the rape conviction, arguing that the man's actions weren't sexual in nature.

Both the man and his girlfriend testified that the act was an attempt to ascertain whether or not the woman had engaged in sexual activity with another man.

"His action can therefore not be seen as having a sexual character such that it can be regarded as a sexual act according to the criminal code," the court wrote in its ruling.

The appeals court instead found the man guilty of unlawful coercion and reduced his jail sentence from two years and eight months to 14 months in prison.

The woman's defence attorney slammed the court's ruling for how it might affect similar cases in the future.

"There is a risk that a perpetrator may claim an act didn't involve any sexual desire and thus hide behind the argument even if the truth is otherwise," attorney Marianne Jargenius told the Metro newspaper.

It remains unclear whether or not the new court ruling will also be appealed.

TT/The Local/dl

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Your comments about this article

10:26 February 21, 2013 by RobinHood
Oh Sweden! What has become of you?

A place where the difference between right and wrong has become obscured and confused by politicians, legislators, judges and lawyers who lack the moral values necessary for them to be described as decent human beings.

Sweden's depraved sexual offences laws desperately need to be rewritten, but by who? Is there anyone left in Sweden morally competent to restore some sanity to what has become a global laughing stock?

The Assange case only skimmed the surface. A land where it is legal to take photographs of naked strangers - as long as they are sleeping. Where it is legal to have sex with an animal. Where it is legal to drive several times over the alcohol limit, as long as you don't feel drunk.

Oh Sweden!
11:30 February 21, 2013 by engagebrain
This is absurd - from the woman's perspective the motivation of the man is completely irrelevant - its a nasty sexual assault. legally it is impossible to honsty discover a man's motivation and the whole legal framework starts to collapse. A persons body is their own, touch only with permission.

Paddling Out 'I agree with this ruling. Islamically, it would be improper for her to have been unfaithful and that it more important than anything else, especially her input on the matter.'

and this judgement is going to be taken as justification, by some, for checking up on their property.
11:35 February 21, 2013 by Reason and Realism
Another heinously idiotic ruling by a Swedish judge.

Rape in wartime is often conducted on both men and women with broomsticks, rifle barrels, steel rods, etc.. in other words through acts of penetration that are not sexual, but that are designed to be both painful and deeply humiliating/traumatising.

Accordingly the imbecile judge should not read the fine print of outdated and/or naive Swedish definitions of rape to hunt for technicalities that can be used to reduce the man's sentence..

Where is the justice minister on this? If the judges are too stupide to make any judgements, it is time to change the laws and minimum sentencing rules.
12:01 February 21, 2013 by byke
How would a finger indicate any form of infidelity?

She is hardly likely to have kept any loose fluid in without it dribbling out.

Women remember,

Nothing says "I love you" from a man who is willing to risk putting his finger in another mans jizz.
12:03 February 21, 2013 by findlaw2000
The appeal court has undoubtedly done the right thing. An action can not be established as rape without an element of rape intention.
12:23 February 21, 2013 by RobinHood
@Findlaw

I sincerely hope you would feel the same way if someone were to do the "right thing" to you one day.
12:35 February 21, 2013 by Rishonim
I can only assume that the message this appeal court is sending is that it is ok to go out and finger any woman out there and claim the actions weren't sexual in nature, but merely as a test to see how far the finger could reach. What a country of troglodytes.....
13:20 February 21, 2013 by OopSan
After this guy will come out of the prison he should stick his fingers in this judje's ass. Just to check how many bullshit left in this judge.
14:13 February 21, 2013 by k2kats
This is an inconceivable double violation of human rights.

Padding out: At minimum, this is a legal, not religious matter, that took place in Sweden and is therefore subject to Swedish law.

Rape is never about sex; it's about power. "No" means no. Even if that were not the case, there is no legal and binding relationship between these two that obligates her to sexual fidelity.

I hope the poor woman has managed to deal with this double layer of intimidation and any feelings of hopelessness to part company with this... criminal.

Are judges in Sweden elected or appointed?
14:25 February 21, 2013 by jostein
His actions have been judged criminal. This crime has a punishment attached to it. This punishment might be too lenient in many citizens minds. Or it might not be. Fair enough.

However, in sweden there is an obesession to classify any remotely sexual crime as rape, such as the extensive change in swedens sexcrime law 2005. This is inane. A duck is a duck and a shovel is a shovel. Those that think his actions henious should argue that the actions he did commit are punished more harshly, rather than argue to have them relabeled, further diluting "rape".

My personal reflexion is that this is a testimony of the excedingly strong position of cultural marxists in the swedish mediopolitical class. These people obsess about what word is used but care little about any objective meaning of words. Truth be told, they do not care about objective reality at all. These people have totally destroyed the intellectual climate of sweden.
15:00 February 21, 2013 by Kevin Harris
@Jostein

Agreed, in Sweden the definition of rape has been perverted way beyond its common English meaning.

But, the violation of someone's orifices by way of the forcible insertion of an object, be it animal, vegetable or mineral, is pretty much a semantic bulls eye.

There is probably now only one country in the world where such a thing is not legally defined as rape. It was the victim's bad luck that she lived in Sweden. But even more bad luck for the next woman whose boyfriend or husband wants to indulge in an impromptu medical inspection of her private parts.

One presumes the victim should have been relieved her boyfriend didn't use a broom handle to further his investigations into her chastity.
15:18 February 21, 2013 by Reason and Realism
@ jostein

This is not the Assange case.

The act of ripping off someone's clothing and violently penatrating that person against their will is what causes physical and often irreparable emotional harm to the victim, regardless of what object is used in the penetration, and regardless of whether or not the attacker gets any sexual gratification from the attack (which is irrelevant).

Assault crimes that include penetration can be called rape, without 'diluting' the term. Human psychological makeup is such that for most victims, rape is worse than slap or a punch in the face, and the extra harm(often permanent psychological harm) justifies higher penalties for rape than a class of assault crimes that result in temporary injury or no injury.
17:10 February 21, 2013 by Phillynilly
I thought rape was defined as non consensual sexual intercourse......
17:36 February 21, 2013 by godnatt
Comment removed by The Local for breach of our terms.
19:05 February 21, 2013 by Migga
What a laughable case. It was a sexual assult no matter what the perps intentions were. It`s ridiculous how the courts take the criminals words as law and do anything to not punish them. The victim is left to fend for themselves if they don`t commit suicide from depression.
21:14 February 21, 2013 by dizzymoe33
If someone forces something either foreign or a penis or fingers into another person's body without their permission and whether their intentions were sexual or not is RAPE!!!!! I don't understand all this non-sense at all with the Swedish laws. Maybe she should cut off his penis and claim some excuse like I thought he was sleeping with another woman so I put an end to that!!
21:22 February 21, 2013 by boomhauer
I agree, sexual assault needs to have a sexual intent. If I fall and grabs a breast or a boobie or a titty or a booty or a vagina to prevent my fall, its not sexual assault, I am trying not to fall, I'm not trying to rape anyone. The law needs to reflect those differences.
21:35 February 21, 2013 by johan rebel
Oh come on, the perp's actions were "sexual in nature" regardless of his intentions.
23:07 February 21, 2013 by Flan59
Rape is never about sex - it is the violent act of control over another human being in the most debasing way. This is why sometimes objects are used. therefore is not a sexual act - therefore - this man raped this woman.

This ruling is giving people who abuse women, as this man obviously is, the right to violate a person's body , And when that happens - not matter where in the body it occurs - it is assault. And when that assault is in a woman's vagina, it is called rape.

No one has the right to violate another person's body.
23:17 February 21, 2013 by Elf_Moon
I am so disturbed that this has happened in a Swedish court. Maybe I expected more from a country like this :(

Though the wording of this article confuse me. Did she feel herself that it was rape? Or did she just feel it to be a mere violation? Because if someone inserted something into my genitalia against my will I'd feel it were rape! Regardless of how the criminal felt about it or the reason behind it!
18:40 February 22, 2013 by jhpackard
Sick, twisted, EVIL court. Was the the perp Muslim? If so, then the omission of that in the article is ... sick, twisted, EVIL ....as is Islam.
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