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Police call for tougher gun crime penalties

TT/David Landes · 21 Oct 2010, 09:10

Published: 21 Oct 2010 09:10 GMT+02:00

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“It’s unacceptable that people who are found with loaded weapons are released again after only one or two days,” Per Lidehäll of the Skåne County police told the Skånska Dagbladet newspaper.

In 2010 alone, there have been more than 50 reported shootings in Malmö. The town remains on edge following an announcement by police on Wednesday that a single gunman may be responsible for up to 15 shootings targeting people with immigrant backgrounds.

On Wednesday night police confirmed that the same weapon had been used in several of the shootings.

“We’re looking at a handgun, either a pistol of a revolver. If we find the gun in question, we’ll have made a huge breakthrough. Now we have something concrete that shows that the shootings are related,” Börje Sjöholm of the Skåne County police told the TT news agency.

While Sjöholm confirmed the same weapon was used in several of the shootings, he refused to say exactly how many of the victims may have been shot with the same gun.

According to Lidehäll, there are “too many” guns on the streets in Malmö, with many having been smuggled in over the Öresund Bridge or simply procured illicitly over the internet.

Police hope that updating legislation may help address the problem. They argue that current laws don’t reflect the realities of contemporary society. Whereas weapons seizures were a rare and noteworthy event years ago, today finding and confiscating guns is nothing out of the ordinary.

Currently, illegal firearm possession carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison, while those convicted of aggravated gun crimes in Sweden are sentenced to between six months and four years in prison.

Weapons offences deemed to be minor, however, may result in fines or a maximum of six months in prison.

Story continues below…

“It doesn’t help to stop and bother people who walk around with weapons of there isn’t a severe punishment,” J-B Cederholm with the county police told the newspaper.

Cederholm added he is also concerned that guns are ending up in the hands of young people, explaining that even children have been caught roaming the streets with loaded weapons.

TT/David Landes (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

09:41 October 21, 2010 by Brtahan
No 1 Commenting !!! But if it was the other way around, this could be full of comments.... This news could be allover the world if it was the other way around.
09:49 October 21, 2010 by saschap
prisons don't make anyone better, people come out from prison full of rage against society and they repeat crimes. beside it, prisoners are exploited, they get only 1 euro per hour for work, so, businessmen and the state need slaves. but when slaves go out from prison as poor, they attack us on the street for money. 34% of prison population in Denmark has no place to sleep when they go out from prison. It means, they will attack me for money even they worked in the prison.
09:52 October 21, 2010 by RobinHood
"It's unacceptable that people who are found with loaded weapons are released again after only one or two days,"

Unacceptable??? This has got to be the understatement of the year. Well done Per Lidehäll for saying it anyway. Especially as he will probably lose his job for doing so. Please would others in the Swedish police make similar public criticism of Sweden's loopy legislators. Maybe they can shame the legal boffins into correcting the terrible mess they have made of Sweden's criminal sentencing.
10:07 October 21, 2010 by Kevin Harris

No one imprisoned for gun crime has ever simultaneously walked the streets carrying a loaded weapon. Imprisonment is 100% effective at keeping an armed criminal off the streets.

If, as you say, there is a risk they might on release find another gun and do it again, then they can stay there until they rot.
10:28 October 21, 2010 by Streja
Why would he lose his job? He has the right in the consitution to say what he wants.
12:27 October 21, 2010 by Swedesmith
The Swiss all have guns. I don't hear about a lot of crime there.
13:14 October 21, 2010 by BlackAfrican
Immigrant is an innocuous word. Can you tell the general public what type of "immigrant" the shooter is targeting? Is it Black Africans, Asians etc? Before I came to Sweden I met many Swedes while living in New York, the Swedes basically were quiet and awkward, yet one thing I took away after meeting many Swedes was that both male and females were looking for a mate that was not Swedish. Now I see why.

Though I am with a Swedish citizen (my wife is originally from Uganda, Black as space). I can't help to wonder how long we should stay here. Though the country gets along pretty well I for love of me can get over how morally depraved and hypocritical Sweden is. The simple fact that there has been a racist shooting spree and no one in authority is talking about it makes me sick to my stomach. Sweden is a sham of a nation for sure.
13:57 October 21, 2010 by americanska
maybe people should be punished harder for commiting gun crimes. not just those in jail for the having it, what if i'm a Swede with a gun license that expires...is the government going to hunt me down? yuk
14:02 October 21, 2010 by Rishonim
@BlackAfrican. Obviously they are targeting blacks and people with a middle eastern look (Mediterranean). Therefore if David Villa or Cristiano Ronaldo lived in Malmö they would also be a potential targets. Will the useless police ever catch them? I think not!
14:49 October 21, 2010 by Syftfel
This is but one of many reasons why Sweden DEMANDS re-introduction of immigration and customs inspection at the Öresund Bridge, trains and cars. Inform the ridiculous bureaucrats in Brussels and exit the Schengen agreement if you have to!
15:46 October 21, 2010 by cowboykodp
If its an immigrant doing these shootings, then its called terrorism and wanting to take over Europe. If its a white Swede, then its a crime. STRANGE.

Bottom line, its a crime. Why do Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Blacks, Whites and Asians get along in the US? One of the main reasons is a kick ass law enforcement force.

This is what Sweden needs. Not Xenophobic political Parties.
17:12 October 21, 2010 by Engelsmannen
cowboykodp - they get along because they have moved to a country that accepts open-minded people who are willing to integrate, and where immigrants of all nations are expected to leave their xenophobia and mysoginism behind at the border. If you can't accept these simple requirements, the USA says no and you move to a country like Sweden instead, where you're welcomed with open arms regardless of the misguided values you bring with you.

Take the case of the Middle-Eastern man who refused to shake hands with or touch women in the hospital where he worked because it was "Against his religion". He successfully sued the Swedish Healthcare Authority when he was sacked for his mysoginistic attitide. Don't think he'd last too long in the US...
18:02 October 21, 2010 by cowboykodp

Agreed, I did however say "One of the main reasons".

Your reason is also valid .

Another point: Do you think the fact that the US has a less generous welfare system for immigrants is also a cause of better and faster integration?

I have always believed that the Swedish system is also to blame. Its one thing to say this, yet another to say immigrants to Sweden have "misguided Values",

specifically Muslims, by insinuation.

Refugees from all countries, unfortunately are treated like children, instead of giving them an incentive and opportunities to better integrate.

If your name is Muhammed, Mustafa, Carlos, Ching or Sven; you can find jobs and housing in the US. Unfortunately Europe/Sweden is 50 years behind the US and sadly, the Middle East is more like 100 behind the US in this regard.
19:14 October 21, 2010 by Mike #1986
5 years in prison for carry a illegal weapon in the state of New South Wales when I ONCE upon a time lived there..

Swedes they consider them selves so liberal but stupid when confronted by action.
20:02 October 21, 2010 by Tanskalainen
@BlackAfrican What you said about Swedes looking for other mates was scary! Why on earth do Swedish men and women have such a disregard and mistrust of each other!?!? Tell us, you must know, you chose a black woman for a bride. Was your mother proud?
20:16 October 21, 2010 by bramblebush
@ Blackafrican

Perhaps you should consider going back to africa. I hear life is much better there and there is no racism there.
21:15 October 21, 2010 by Iraniboy
Wasn't there an article in thelocal about a SD member who called for shooting of immigrants who protest and putting them in bags and post them home? These recent shooting reminded me of her comment!

Police is now searching for extreme right wing persons. They should started from thelocal.se forum and use comments since there are a lot of them here!!

That's why many Swedes don't want scaremongers likes SD. SD ilk create hatred, hatred creates crime and crime create more hatred. This circle never ends
22:35 October 21, 2010 by cowboykodp

Why do you assume he is from Africa? Do you come from the Australian bush?
00:14 October 22, 2010 by Swedesmith
Who cares where he comes from. Bottom line, he is in Sweden. If he doesn't like it here, then he should look to greener pastures. Life is too short to be so unhappy.
09:12 October 22, 2010 by Jarvilainennen

That woman who said people should be sent back in bodybags, should have been indicted. You do not say things like that especially when in politics or in case one is seeking to have effect in that field.

This is a definite no-go area.

Was she indicted?
14:37 October 22, 2010 by jimmyjames
Here in the USA weapons are everywhere. Within, walking distance of my home there are several Pawn Shops, two large sporting goods stores, and a Wal-Mart that sell everything from air rifles to high powered hunting rifles to semi-automatic Assualt Rifles in addition to every handgun ever manufactured. The ONLY criteria for purchase is that : 1.) A citizen of the USA, 2.) a citizen of the state where the purchase is made 3.) Never have been convicted of a Felony crime or misdimeanor Domestic Violence 4.) Are not certified to be afflickted with a mental disorder that would predispose you to violence. Now if you shoot somone in a criminal endeavor ( not self-defense) you will spend anywhere from 5 years to Life ( no parole) depending on how badly they are injured. If you kill them there is a 60% chance of recieving Death and 100% chance of Life without Parole. If you have a Criminal record and are caught with a weapon it is a Mandatory 5 calender years, no parole, no pardon, no early release 1st Offense.......a 2nd Offense will land you in jail until you are advaned old age. We take our Right to Bear Arms seriously and by the same token we severly punish the abuse of that right. With every right comes RESPONSIBILITY. tHE LIBERALS NEVER SEEM TO GET THAT CONCEPT.
03:45 October 23, 2010 by Sam1
Soon Sweden is USA, every one has a pistol...coool
22:53 October 23, 2010 by Texas1
It's to bad Sweden's gun laws are so strict. If these people were packin some hardware, these victims very well could be alive today. Guns in the hands of law-abiding citizens are a deterent to crime. The crimes prevented, far out-weigh the crimes committed. It's very unfortunate that these people had to die at the hands of a crazed gunman(or woman) with no chance of defending themselves.

Here in Texas, smart criminals think twice before they start something, especially when they know there's a strong chance that "Big Tex" is packin. Crazy criminals end up with a toe tag.
17:05 July 18, 2011 by blackcoat1
[quote]Currently, illegal firearm possession carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison, while those convicted of aggravated gun crimes in Sweden are se…[/quote]Only 4 years in jail for using a gun during a crime? That penalty is a joke.

Here in Singapore where I live, owning a gun illegally gets you jailed 5 years plus caning, and JUST FIRING ONE ROUND from a gun illegally means a one-way trip to see the HANGMAN! (death penalty)

But gun crime is almost unheard of in Singapore, probably due to the extremely strict anti-gun laws.
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