More trials called off due to no-show suspects

Greater numbers of trials are being cancelled because the accused fail to show up when called to appear in court.

Between 2005 and 2007, the number of district court proceedings called off because of no-show defendants has risen by 20 percent, reports Sveriges Radio.

Nothing indicates that the increase has leveled off in 2008, according to statistics from National Courts Administration (Domstolsverket).

A total of 15,000 criminal trials have been cancelled in the last three years because the suspects don’t show up.

Part of the explanation is that police only take in people who have been accused of serious crimes.

For the last two years, a father now held on suspicions of having killed his two-year-old son in Huskvarna in central Sweden over the weekend has avoided charges of abusing the woman who is the child’s mother.

Some cases are simply written off if those charged hold out long enough.

“It’s a serious gap in the system if people who are suspected of crimes can’t be brought before the court,” said Charlotte Brokelind of Eksjö District Court in central Sweden to Svergies Radio.