Fewer Swedish killers get life sentence

Fewer Swedish killers get life sentence
The number of convicted murderers being sentenced to life imprisonment has fallen dramatically following the Swedish Supreme Court's decision in March that the standard penalty for murder should be ten years in jail.

A life sentence should be reserved only for the most serious crimes, ruled the court.

Now the Swedish Prosecution Authority’s Gothenburg office has conducted a study into the effects of the ruling in Swedish courts. The immediate result is that the number of life sentences has fallen, reports Svenska Dagbladet.

In the last ten years, around half of all convicted murderers in Sweden have been given a life sentence. By contrast, of the 29 murder cases heard in Sweden since the Supreme Court judgement on March 30th only five, or 17 percent have resulted in a life sentence.

The procedure established by the Supreme Court appears to be uncontroversial: in all of the cases studied, the district courts and the appeal courts have been in agreement regarding the punishment handed down.