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CRIME

Man cleared of locking daughter in fridge

The 32-year-old man suspected of risking his daughter's life by locking her inside a refrigerator has been cleared of all charges by Sundsvall District Court.

The man was charged with twice having caused his daughter bodily harm.

In December 2005, the girl was treated for burns caused by boiling water. Six months later, in June 2006, she was again hospitalized after losing consciousness as a result of either being held in cold water or locked inside a refrigerator.

The court ruled however that there was no evidence tying the girl’s father to either of the incidents. As the girl has not suggested that her father hurt her in any way, the court decided to drop the charge of serious assault.

During the trial, the suspect pleaded not guilty to having injured his daughter, although he was unable to provide an explanation for her injuries. He had been alone with the girl at the time of both of her injuries.

The then four-year-old girl was unconscious when she arrived at Sundsvall Hospital in June last year. Her body temperature was well below normal and she remained in a critical condition for several days.

Though cleared of the central charge, the 32-year-old was fined for violently resisting arrest when first apprehended by police on suspicion of assaulting his daughter.

POLITICS

Swedish party leader calls for chemical castration of sex offenders

Sweden's Christian Democrats have called for tougher sentences for sex offenders and making release conditional on chemical castration.

Swedish party leader calls for chemical castration of sex offenders

The Swedish Christian Democrats (KD) leader has called for the chemical castration of certain sex offenders as part of plans for a tougher grip on sexual crime and punishment in Sweden.

Speaking to the Swedish parliament on July 1st, KD party leader Ebba Busch said, “Every day, 27 rapes are reported. How many days must pass before the government takes action?”

“Today we propose that rapists and people who commit sexual crimes against children should be able to be chemically castrated.”

The controversial chemical castration proposal was the headline grabbing soundbite in a broader set of proposals to recalibrate the structure of Sweden’s sexual crime sentencing.

Among KD’s proposed sentencing changes is a life sentence for the aggravated rape of a child, the removal of automatic conditional release for sex offenders, and an increase in the sentence for aggravated rape up to a maximum of 25 years.

In addition, they want a “monitoring period” for convicts who have been released, equivalent to one third of the sentence served.

They also want to establish a national knowledge centre for sexual violence where people who feel that they have “problematic sexuality” can receive support. The center must also “be able to administer chemical castration on a voluntary basis to those who are concerned about unwanted sexual thoughts and impulses and have a compulsive sexuality”.

READ ALSO: What’s the Swedish Christian Democrats’ abortion contract all about?

Chemical castration, she suggested, should be implemented as a condition of release for some sexual offenders. “It may mean that if a person like Nytorgsmannen is to be able to become a free man, a chemical castration must have taken place before the release,” Busch said, referring to Andreas Holm, a man sentenced in 2021 for 35 different crimes including 24 rapes.

But this is not the first time the Christian Democrats have toyed with the idea of chemical castration as a form of legal punishment. As far back as 20 years ago, under former leader Alf Svensson, the right-wing party raised the idea of conditional chemical castration of rapists and pedophiles.

At the time the proposal was rejected by all other parties.

Chemical castration, the process of preventing sex hormone production through chemicals, can reduce sexual libido but the effects on those with deviant behaviours are relatively unknown.

Chemical castration can also prove costly as it is not a one-off treatment but rather requires regular interventions, which means the police would be reliant on those sentences to chemical castration making regular trips to the authorities for further treatment.

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