Man in ‘oil tank’ killing gets six years

A 31-year old man from Teckomatorp in southern Sweden who killed his live-in girlfriend and hid her body in an oil tank has been sentenced to six years in prison for manslaughter.

Prison sentences for manslaughter in Sweden range from six to ten years.

The head prosecutor Mikael Björk refused to comment on why the 31-year old received the minimum sentence.

He wasn’t prepared to state whether or not he would appeal the ruling before he had read it completely, he said after the sentence was announced.

Judge Jan Alvå emphasized that the case rested in large part on the 31-year old’s version of events.

The court was unanimous in finding that the man lacked malicious intent in the case. He took a conscious risk, knowing his girlfriend could die, when he hit her in the head with a board.

According to the judge, the fact that he then set a noose around her neck using straps from a toy shows that he was unaware of the effects of the blow.

The judge believed as well that it was not a case of a planned murder, which played a role in how the sentencing.

“That it happened quite quickly is very clear,” said Alvå.

The woman’s parents and her five children are each set to receive monetary damages equal to 50,000 kronor ($7,600). Both of the victim’s siblings and the two fathers of her four oldest children had also sought damages, but were not awarded any.

The prosecutor has requested a sentence of 10 years for the 31-year old, who confessed that he’d killed his girlfriend and then hid the body.

He asserted that there wasn’t any direct motive in the case, but rather that the 31-year old took a known risk when he committed the violent act against his girlfriend and that in the heat of the moment, the suspect was unaware of what the exact consequences of the act might be.

Defence attorney Stig Brunnström believed that it was not clear beyond a reasonable doubt that the woman died of the blow to the head, followed by strangulation, as the prosecutor asserted.

Brunnström wanted the suspect to be tried for manslaughter or aggravated manslaughter.


Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

A man was shot to death in Kristianstad, Skåne, late on Thursday night. He is the 48th person to be shot dead in Sweden this year, meaning that the previous record for most fatal shootings in one year set in 2020 has now been broken.

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

“Unfortunately we can’t say more than that he’s in his twenties and we have no current suspects,” duty officer Mikael Lind told TT newswire.

According to police statistics, this most recent deadly shooting means that 48 people have been shot to death in 2022, meaning that Sweden has broken a new record for deadly shootings per year.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s police chief Anders Thornberg said that this number is likely to rise even higher before the end of the year.

“It looks like we’re going to break the record this year,” he told TT on Tuesday. “That means – if it continues at the same pace – around 60 deadly shootings.”

“If it ends up being such a large increase that would be very unusual,” said Manne Gerell, criminiologist at Malmö University.

“We saw a large increase between 2017 and 2018, and we could see the same now, as we’re on such low figures in Sweden. But it’s still worrying that it’s increasing by so much over such a short time period,” he said.

There also seems to be an upwards trend in the number of shootings overall during 2022. 273 shootings had occured by September 1st this year, compared with 344 for the whole of 2021 and 379 for the whole of 2020.

If shootings continue at this rate for the rest of 2022, it is likely that the total number for the year would be higher than 2021 and 2020. There are, however, fewer injuries.

“The majority of shootings cause no injuries, but this year, mortality has increased substantially,” Gerell explained. “There aren’t more people being shot, but when someone is shot, they’re more likely to die.”

Thursday’s shooting took place in Kristianstad, but it’s only partially true that deadly gun violence is becoming more common in smaller cities.

“It’s moved out somewhat to smaller cities, but we’re overexaggerating that effect,” Gerell said. “We’re forgetting that there have been shootings in other small cities in previous years.”

A report from the Crime Prevention Council (Brå) presented last spring showed that Sweden, when compared with 22 different countries in Europe, was the only one with an upwards trend for deadly shootings.

Temporary increases can be seen during some years in a few countries, but there were no countries which showed such a clear increase as Sweden has seen for multiple years in a row, according to Brå.

The Swedish upwards trend for deadly gun violence began in the beginning of the 2000s, but the trend took off in 2013 and has continued to increase since.

Eight of ten deadly shootings take place in criminal environments, the study showed. The Swedish increase has taken place in principle only among the 20-29 year old age group.

When police chief Anders Thornberg was asked how the trend can be broken, he said that new recruitments are one of the most important factors.

“The most important thing is to break recruitment, make sure we can listen encrypted and that we can get to the profits of crime in a better way,” he said.