Gang members get two years for forced tattoo

Two men with connections to a Swedish criminal gang have each been sentenced to two years in jail for forcing an 18-year-old boy to cover over a tattoo resembling the gang's logo.

The tattoo artist who helped the gang members was also sentenced on Friday by Södertörn District Court to three months imprisonment for assault. The court took a more lenient view of the tattoo artist’s role in the incident in light of information that he may have been acting under duress.

The boy was approached earlier this year by two members of the Fucked For Life gang after they learned that the 18-year-old had a tattoo on his arm bearing the legend Förstörd För Livet (Ruined For Life).

The boy said he liked the way the words sounded together and did not reflect on the fact that they resembled the name of the gang based in Tumba, a suburb in south Stockholm.

But the gang members informed him that he would find himself in serious trouble if he did not make his way to a tattoo parlour in Tumba and either have the tattoo fully removed or covered over by another design.

The boy opted for the latter option and had a tattoo of a long knife superimposed over the original words. He was also punched in the side of the head and ordered to pay damages to the gang for allegedly infringing their trademark.

Some weeks later the boy’s parents paid the men 50,000 kronor ($6,400).

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