Ex-criminals appointed as Swedish judges

People with criminal pasts have been appointed as judges in Swedish courts by the far-right Sweden Democrat Party.

The party won 2.9 percent of the national vote in September’s general election, and gained representatives on many of Sweden’s local authorities. This gives party officials the right to appoint lay judges to sit in local courts.

According to TV4, the party has appointed people with criminal records in a number of areas.

One of those appointed was Roger Hedlund, a Sweden Democrat councillor in Gävle. He has previous convictions for assault, dangerous driving and theft. Hedlund told TV4 that his life of crime was behind him.

“These are really old offences. I’ve been quiet and responsible for many years now,” he told the TV station.