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Triple murderer released

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Triple murderer released
16:14 CET+01:00
Triple murderer Nikita Joakim Foughantine, formerly known as Juha Valjakkala, has been released from a Finnish jail.

Foughantine is to be kept under close observation until July 1st, when his conditional release is made permanent, Finnish authorities said on Monday.

Foughantine's early release was sanctioned by Helsinki Court of Appeal as a means of ensuring that he is kept under strict supervision for the initial period of his return to civilian life.

Finland's decision to grant Foughantine a pardon provoked strong reactions in Sweden late last year.

The Helsinki court agreed to release Valjakkala on a suspended sentence more than 19 years after he began serving his life sentence. He had sought a pardon on a number of previous occasion and had escaped or attempted to escape from prison at least five times.

Fouganthine shot and killed a man and his 15-year-old son and stabbed the man's wife to death in a graveyard in Åmsele, near Skellefteå, in 1988.

The Finn and his girlfriend were arrested a week later in Denmark. He was sentenced to life imprisonment and deportation. His girlfriend was sentenced to two years in jail for serious assault.

Church of Sweden minister Marie-Louise Marsjögård said that the village had recovered from the worst of its trauma.

"Maybe there is a sense of discomfort but there is no major sense of fear anymore. Some emotions bubble up to the surface when the mass media come up here but it feels a bit like we've already got over this," said Marsjögård, who has been a minister in the village for ten years.

"It's time for him to come out into realty and I hope it goes well for him," she added.

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