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Swedish police tackle child sex abuse abroad

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09:24 CET+01:00
Swedish police are working on measures to make it easier to report Swedes who have sexually assault children abroad. Police will soon have a form on their website that will make it easier for individuals who are overseas and suspect that a Swedish citizen has sexually abused a minor.

At the beginning of 2009, police began to take action against Swedish citizens who commit crimes against children during trips abroad. Four full-time employees work with the issue.

Police would like to encourage Swedish tourists to sound the alarm if they suspect that other Swedes have committed crimes against children and youths.

“Unfortunately, we haven't received very many reports thus far,” Björn Sellström, detective at the the National Criminal Investigative Department (Rikskriminalpolisen), told TT news agency.

He emphasizes that it is also possible to report suspected sexual assault of children abroad upon return to Sweden.

Every year, 4,000-5,000 Swedish citizens purchase sexual services from children under the age of 18, according to a 2008 report by Christian Diesen and Eva Diesen of Faculty of Law at Stockholm University.

Since 1962, Sweden has extraterritorial legislation, which means that a Swedish citizen who committs a crime abroad can be tried for it in Sweden. There have however, only been a few cases where Swedes have been convicted of sexual abuse of children committed abroad.

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