Expressen fights former Lindh murder suspect over libel claim

Swedish tabloid Expressen and its editor Otto Sjöberg are to continue fighting a lawsuit brought against them by the man first suspected of murdering foreign minister Anna Lindh in 2003. The case has now reached the Supreme Court.

“Expressen is engaging in tactical manoeuvres to prolong the compensation process,” lawyer Martin Särman, representing the man, who was 35 years old at the time of the killing.

In the original lawsuit, which was filed at Stockholm district court, the 35-year-old sued Aftonbladet and Expressen, along with their subsidiary editions GT and Kvällsposten, for 250,000 kronor each.

Expressen has appealed against the lawsuit at every level, forcing the case up to Sweden’s highest court.

“We’re calling on the Supreme Court to reject the lawsuit since the statements are incomplete and false,” said Expressen’s lawyer Ulf Isaksson.

The man, who is now 38, was arrested on September 16th 2003 outside Råsunda stadium where he was attending a football match. The arrest took place in front of press photographers and prompted massive media attention.

Several of the man’s acquaintances spoke out about his personality and perosnal situation. The man has argued that the newspapers’ coverage about him was seriously intrusive. He claims that he was held up as the probable killer.

“What Expressen and the other papers did must be a world record for slander,” said Martin Särman.