Expressen prosecuted for Persbrandt stories

Sweden's Chancellor of Justice is to prosecute tabloid paper Expressen for libelling actor Mikael Persbrandt.

Expressen claimed in December that Persbrandt had been admitted to a clinic suffering from acute alcohol poisoning. The claim was later shown to be untrue.

The Chancellor of Justice’s office only usually opens prosecutions in freedom of speech cases, but it does have the right to launch prosecutions following complaints from the public in special circumstances.

People who feel they have been libeled usually have to launch their own law suits. In this case, the Chancellor of Justice decided that the type of information and the suffering they had caused warranted taking up the case.

The fact that the information was false and had been widely disseminated also influenced the decision to prosecute.