“A warrant was out for his arrest and he should have been reported as wanted straight away. But for some reason it was forgotten” said chief prosecutor Mats Svensson to local paper Skånskan.
According to the paper, the man was charged with aggravated child pornography offences in 2008, but never turned up for the trial, which had to be postponed. And then the Lund district court simply forgot about him.
The discovery that the case had fallen into oblivion only happened when someone enquired off the cuff what the outcome had been. The 34-year-old has been able to live a normal life with his girlfriend and his job for the last four years.
Had this not been a case of aggravated child porn crimes, the statute of limitations would have come into effect by now, leaving the man free from previous charges.
However, according to the paper, the man’s identity has been in the system all this time, so that if he had tried to travel or had been stopped in a police vehicle control, warning bells would have gone off for the officers.
The 34-year-old was apprehended by police in 2006 when he was found in possession of 13,000 child porn images and 236 films on his personal computer.
Of these, police deemed that 137 images and 50 films, comprising some 396 minutes, depicted treatment of the children that could be judged as specifically ruthless.
The mistake rectified, the trial date has now been set for March 12th.