• Sweden's news in English

Socialite Swede released from Australian jail

Peter Vinthagen Simpson · 26 May 2010, 14:31

Published: 25 May 2010 11:14 GMT+02:00
Updated: 26 May 2010 14:31 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Lindström was released on Tuesday and is now free to fly home to Sweden, the foreign ministry in Stockholm confirmed to The Local on Tuesday.

"I can confirmed that she has been released from prison today," said Anders Jörle, a foreign ministry spokesperson.

Charlotte Lindström is however unlikely to ever feel completely free again after cooperating with the Australian authorities on a slew of cases involving her former boyfriend, including testifying in a recent trial where her ex-lover Steven Spaliviero pleaded guilty to four counts of manufacturing commercial quantities of amphetamines and ecstasy.

According to Aftonbladet the Swede is due to be deported to Sweden and will be advised over her protection by the Swedish police on arrival, but the foreign ministry denied on Tuesday that the Swedish authorities are involved in her case.

"As she has been released from prison, she is a free woman and is not a matter for us," Anders Jörle told The Local.

Charlotte Lindström travelled to Australia as a 19-year-old and quickly became a regular in the gossip pages of Sydney's society magazines while working as a "meet and greet" hostess at some of the city's luxury hotels. Her high society profile led to her meeting Steven Spaliviero, a man with a long criminal past.

Lindström and Spaliviero became engaged to be married and the young Swede proceeded to live the high life of fast cars and cocaine until her world came crashing down at the end of 2006 amid allegations of Spaliviero's connections to a multi-million dollar drugs ring.

The then 23-year-old became embroiled in the investigation when she agreed to liaise with a hired gun to silence the two witnesses lined up to testify against Spaliviero in his drugs trial. Lindström later pleaded guilty to soliciting an undercover police officer to commit murder and agreed to testify against her former lover.

In passing the sentence, which was reduced by the New South Wales Court of Appeal from nine and a half years for a crime that can carry up to 25 years, the court recognized the Swede's remorse and her cooperation with the authorities in the trial and in further cases under investigation against Spaliviero.

"She will spend the rest of her life looking over her shoulders," presiding judge, Justice Stephen Rothman, said at the time.

Rothman also referred to psychological reports which showed that Lindström was suffering from anorexia, a claim supported by the young woman's pale and emaciated appearance at the court, while clad in a bullet-proof vest.

Story continues below…

The Local reported in June 2009 that due to concerns over her health, Sweden's ambassador to Australia, Sven-Olof Petersson, had requested Lindström's repatriation to complete her sentence in her home country.

Steven Spaliviero pleaded guilty in April to four counts of manufacturing commercial quantities of amphetamines and ecstasy. Lindström testified for the second time against her former boyfriend at the trial for the prosecution, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

The newspaper furthermore reports that Lindström is set to publish her story in an upcoming book. The book will be published in Sweden as New South Wales law prevents convicted criminals from benefiting from their crimes.

A spokesperson at the Australian embassy in Stockholm told The Local on Wednesday that they were unwilling to comment on the case and was unable to confirm any details pertaining to the case or whether the Australian authorities remained involved.

Peter Vinthagen Simpson (news@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

14:11 May 25, 2010 by peropaco
Maybe she could start her own reality show on SVT or become a spokeperson for the social democrats.
16:29 May 25, 2010 by zircon
Lectori Salutem

And how was the prison food?
Today's headlines
Prime Minister to meet Swedish troops in Iraq
Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and his Kurdish counterpart Nechervan Barzani. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Sweden's Prime Minister Löfven is set to meet Swedish troops in Iraq on Tuesday.

Swedish politicians wage war on winter time
Soon it will look like this on your way home from work in Sweden. Photo: Anders Wiklund/TT

Should Sweden stick with summer time all year round?

'Don't turn the Pope into a global teddy bear'
Sweden's Queen Silvia and Princess Leonore visiting Pope Francis in the Vatican last year. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

It's time to hold the Pope to account and make sure he turns his words about reform into action, argues a minister of the Swedish Church ahead of Pope Francis' visit to Sweden.

Löfven: 'Sweden will double its number of troops in Iraq'
Stefan Löfven and Haider al-Abadi during the visit on Monday. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven has promised to double his country's number of troops in Iraq following a meeting with Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi on Monday.

Will Swedes soon be looking for fairtrade porn?
Should Swedes think fairtrade with porn? Photo: Karin Malmhav/SvD/TT

A fairtrade attitude to pornography would be beneficial, Sweden's health minister told The Local.

Presented by Stockholm University
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Nordic fashion took centre stage in the Swedish capital last week as Stockholm University hosted the “first-ever” academic conference looking at luxury and sustainability in the fashion industry.

Referee, coach and parents in Swedish youth football fight
File photo of a referee holding a red card not related to the story. Photo: Stefan Jerrevång/TT

A football dad broke his leg in the brawl in front of 11-year-old kids after a Hammarby youth football game.

Illicit abattoir kept more than 100 bulls' penises
A couple of young bulls not related to the story. Photo: Jonas Ekströmer/TT

Dried cattle genitalia, goats' heads and hundreds of litres of lard were just a few of the many strange finds discovered when police raided a property in Sweden.

This is officially Sweden's most beautiful beard
The most beautiful beard in Sweden. Photo: Memo Göcek

According to a jury of barbers and 'well known bearded profiles', that is.

Presented by Invest Stockholm
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm

You might think it’s hard to make friends in a new city. But if at first you don’t succeed – try something else!

Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
People-watching: October 21st-23rd
Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
One expat's strategy for making friends in Stockholm
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
Nordic fashion in focus at Stockholm University
People-watching: October 12th
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available