Palme evidence ‘was destroyed’

Police destroyed evidence that may have been linked to the still unsolved 1986 assassination of Swedish prime minister Olof Palme, a new documentary about the murder alleges, reports said Monday.

The film, titled “I Saw Palme’s Murder”, claims that four months before the crime police found the same type of bullets used in Palme’s shooting at the home of an acquaintance of the main suspect, the Expressen daily reported.

The film, scheduled to air on February 26 – two days before the 20th anniversary of the killing – alleges that police did not link the rare Winchester .357 magnum shells found at drug dealer Sigge Cedergren’s home with identical shell-casings later found at the nearby murder site.

When he testified in the 1988 trial of Christer Petersson, who was found guilty but later acquitted due to a lack of evidence, Cedergren said Petersson had stolen .357 magnum shells from his apartment.

By then however, police had destroyed the cartridges taken from Cedergren’s home in October, 1985, according to filmmaker Mikael Hylin’s documentary.

One of the lead investigators in the case, Ingemar Krusell, reportedly did not find out that the evidence had been destroyed until he was interviewed in the film.

Destroying the shells was “sloppy”, he said, adding that the cartridges “may have come from the same shipment as the bullets that Olof Palme was shot with.”

Palme was strolling down a busy Stockholm street on the night of February 28, 1986 with his wife Lisbet after an evening at the cinema when an unidentified assailant gunned him down.

The attacker fled up a stairway over a tunnel.

Despite tens of thousands of tips and leads in the almost two decades since the crime, the murder has never been solved, and the weapon, a .357 Magnum revolver, has never been found.

Petersson, a self-professed alcoholic, drug addict and petty criminal who died in September, 2004 after suffering a mysterious head injury, has remained the main suspect in the case.


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Front page photo: Karl Heinz Hernried/ The Royal Library/