Currently, mentally ill offenders are sent to mental health facilities.
Under the government’s new plan, courts would have the option of prison sentences in certain cases, allowing for more flexibility in the sentencing process.
According to the proposed changes, courts would be required to consider a number of factors in deciding whether or not to sentence a mentally ill offender to prison.
The factors include the severity of the crime, whether the suspect requires long-term hospitalization, and whether the suspect was under the influence of drugs when the crime was committed.
Under the new guidelines, a prison sentence would be possible in the case of a very serious crime committed while the suspect was suffering from a temporary state of psychosis.
The government has submitted the suggestion the Council on Legislation (Lagrådet) for examination and hopes to implement the changes by July 1st, 2008.