Uppsala man charged with exploiting 60 girls

The trial of a Swedish man accused of sexually exploiting nearly 60 young girls he met online through a photo-sharing website opened Thursday in the central city of Uppsala.

Uppsala man charged with exploiting 60 girls

The 26-year-old man is accused of convincing 57 girls aged between ten and 15 to send him explicit photos of themselves or to undress for him in front of a webcam.

“The allegation is based on around 60 witness accounts but the police has proof that around 200 young girls were contacted,” said prosecutor Pontus Melander.

The 26-year-old who has pleaded not guilty, risks six years in prison.

The Swede is alleged to have contacted his victims on the popular Dayviews website, where users share their photos.

Police tracked the man down by tracing his IP address and then raided his house in the beginning of February. Officers then found a large number of pornographic images and films in his mobile phone and on his computer.

According to the police, the man has had extensive contact with several young girls, some as young as between 10 and 13 years of age, and all from different parts of Sweden.

His behaviour and messages to young girls using the site aimed to “infringe the sexual integrity of the plaintiffs,” said the indictment.

Several of the girls have since had to see a psychologist, said their lawyer Paola Negrete.

Witness accounts have been recorded on video and will be broadcast during the trial, said Melander, which will take place as a closed session. Four of the older girls are expected to testify in person.

The 26-year-old man, who is in detention pending trial, is also accused of hoarding child pornography.

Computers and a mobile telephone belonging to the Swede contained “a lot of images and many child pornography films,” said a statement from the prosecutor.

The crimes were reportedly committed in Uppsala between 2009 and 2012.

The trial is expected to last 20 days.

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Three Swedish universities earn spots in top 100

Three Swedish universities made it into the top 100 in an annual ranking of the world's best schools on Tuesday, but some of the country's higher education seats dropped from last year.

Three Swedish universities earn spots in top 100
Students at Lund University. Photo: Aline Lessner/

Lund in southern Sweden was again picked as Sweden's top university and came 73rd in the QS World University Rankings, but dropped three ranks on last year (and down from 60 in 2014).

Eight Swedish universities feature in the QS rankings, and all but three fell in the global list.

The ancient Uppsala University climbed back to the top 100, landing a spot in 98th place. Further down the list, Linköping and Umeå Universities both edged up to 282nd and 294th place, up from 286th and 319th, respectively.

The Royal Institute of Technology (Kungliga Tekniska Högskolan, KTH) dropped from 92nd to 97th place. Gothenburg-based Chalmers University of Technology fell from number 132 to 139 (which is still an improvement on its 175th place in the 2014 QS World University Rankings).

Lund was given a five-star ranking in addition to its place in the list. “Lund is Sweden's most attractive study destination. The compact university campus encourages networking and creates the conditions for scientific breakthroughs and innovations,” read the QS description.

“The university has a clear international profile, with partner universities in over 70 countries. Funding of more than 5 billion kronor a year goes to research at eight faculties, which gives Lund one of Sweden's strongest and broadest ranges of research activity.”

THE LOCAL SWITZERLAND: ETH Zurich best in continental Europe

Now in their 13th year, the annual rankings are compiled by global higher education analysts Quacquerelli Symonds (QS), and rank 916 institutions according to four key pillars: research, teaching employability and internationalization.

For the first time in more than a decade US universities took all three top spots, with MIT placing first for the fifth successive year ahead of Stanford and Harvard, knocking Britain's Cambridge to fourth.

Tuesday's list comes less than a month after the Shanghai Rankings, which picked the Karolinska Institute as the best university in Sweden.