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1989 double murder suspect "psychologically disturbed"

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19:36 CET+01:00
The man who killed 10 year old Helén Nilsson and stands accused of killing 26 year old Jannica Ekblad in 1989 is psychologically ill, according to a psychiatric report which was made public on Monday.

It means that if Ulf Olsson will be sentenced to secure psychiatric care rather than prison.

However, the prosecutor in the case, Pär Andersson, said he will request a second opinion from the Social Services.

On December 20th last year Lund district court concluded that the 53 year old Olsson had raped and murdered Helén Nilsson in March 1989. However, the court postponed judgement about Olsson's role in the death of Jannica Ekblad, a local prostitute, while it waited for further DNA analysis on semen found in her body.

The prosecutor has now decided that this evidence is no longer necessary and the trial was due to begin again on February 7th. It will now be postponed again, following the prosecutor's request for a judicial committee to consider the question of Olsson's psychological state.

Pär Andersson told Göteborgs-Posten that he was surprised by the psychiatric report.

"The thing that surprised me was the time aspect," he said. "That now, such a long time afterwards, they can state that Ulf Olsson, when he committed the crime against Helén, was driven by a psychological illness."

"I want the Social Services to investigate whether it is correct that one can draw the conclusions which the doctors have drawn in this case," he said.

Marianne Kristiansson, a senior consultant at the National Board of Forensic Medicine agreed that a possible objection to the report is the difficulty of determining a person's psychiatric state 16 years ago.

"It is harder and harder the more time has passed and you become increasingly dependent upon the material from the police's investigation," she told Svenska Dagbladet.

Olsson's lawyer, Sven Jernryd, took a different view.

"As far as Helén in concerned the court has found the evidence convincing. So I emphasise that [psychiatric care] is an adequate punishment. If Ulf is ultimately found to be guilty for the attacks on Helén, then it would have been remarkable if he had not been in need of care."

The case is further complicated by the fact that throughout the trial Olsson has claimed not to remember anything of the time around the murders.

"I believe that the technical evidence has convinced Ulf Olsson on a purely intellectual level that he raped a child," said Sven Jernryd.

"But for care to be meaningful everything he has in his head needs to come out so he can be treated for it."

On Wednesday Jernryd told Skånska Dagbladet that Olsson had been moved from the secure psychiatric clinic in Malmö to "a secret location" elsewhere in Skåne. He will not be returned to the jail in Kristianstad, where he had been held on remand, "for security reasons".

Sources: Svenska Dagbladet, Göteborgs Posten, Skånska Dagbladet

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