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CRIME

Norway issues warrant for wanted Swede

A European arrest warrant has been filed for a 27-year-old Swede, wanted in Norway for the lethal beating of a female bouncer in Porsgrunn in March this year.

Norway issues warrant for wanted Swede

“He is now wanted in the whole Schengen area,” said prosecutor John H Borgen to Norwegian news site Varden.

The man, who had been released on bail, had to report to police three times a week, but failed to turn up on July 16th and has been missing since. Police are now intensifying efforts to find him by issuing a description and making him wanted in 26 countries, including Sweden.

Police found the female bouncer lying on the floor after responding to a report of a fight at a pub in Porsgrunn, in southeast Norway, on a Saturday night in March.

The 27-year-old was charged with causing bodily harm resulting in death, as the woman had died in hospital the day after the attack. However, the 27-year-old denied the allegations.

“He denies committing an offence and said under questioning that he doesn’t recall what happened,” said Borgen at the time of the man’s arrest.

Early reports suggested police were unsure whether the suspect had hit the victim, whom they initially believed may have suffered a heart attack or an epileptic fit.

However, when it later came to light that the man had assaulted other members of staff by punching them, police arrested him and brought him in for questioning, wrote daily Svenska Dagbladet (SvD) at the time.

“I haven’t been in contact with him for a while, and I don’t know where he is,” the man’s defence lawyer recently said to Varden.

The man is also under suspicion for several cases of sexual and violent crimes in Sweden and Norwegian officials have decided he is going to be extradited.

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CRIME

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

A man was shot to death in Kristianstad, Skåne, late on Thursday night. He is the 48th person to be shot dead in Sweden this year, meaning that the previous record for most fatal shootings in one year set in 2020 has now been broken.

Sweden breaks yearly record for fatal shootings

“Unfortunately we can’t say more than that he’s in his twenties and we have no current suspects,” duty officer Mikael Lind told TT newswire.

According to police statistics, this most recent deadly shooting means that 48 people have been shot to death in 2022, meaning that Sweden has broken a new record for deadly shootings per year.

Earlier this week, Sweden’s police chief Anders Thornberg said that this number is likely to rise even higher before the end of the year.

“It looks like we’re going to break the record this year,” he told TT on Tuesday. “That means – if it continues at the same pace – around 60 deadly shootings.”

“If it ends up being such a large increase that would be very unusual,” said Manne Gerell, criminiologist at Malmö University.

“We saw a large increase between 2017 and 2018, and we could see the same now, as we’re on such low figures in Sweden. But it’s still worrying that it’s increasing by so much over such a short time period,” he said.

There also seems to be an upwards trend in the number of shootings overall during 2022. 273 shootings had occured by September 1st this year, compared with 344 for the whole of 2021 and 379 for the whole of 2020.

If shootings continue at this rate for the rest of 2022, it is likely that the total number for the year would be higher than 2021 and 2020. There are, however, fewer injuries.

“The majority of shootings cause no injuries, but this year, mortality has increased substantially,” Gerell explained. “There aren’t more people being shot, but when someone is shot, they’re more likely to die.”

Thursday’s shooting took place in Kristianstad, but it’s only partially true that deadly gun violence is becoming more common in smaller cities.

“It’s moved out somewhat to smaller cities, but we’re overexaggerating that effect,” Gerell said. “We’re forgetting that there have been shootings in other small cities in previous years.”

A report from the Crime Prevention Council (Brå) presented last spring showed that Sweden, when compared with 22 different countries in Europe, was the only one with an upwards trend for deadly shootings.

Temporary increases can be seen during some years in a few countries, but there were no countries which showed such a clear increase as Sweden has seen for multiple years in a row, according to Brå.

The Swedish upwards trend for deadly gun violence began in the beginning of the 2000s, but the trend took off in 2013 and has continued to increase since.

Eight of ten deadly shootings take place in criminal environments, the study showed. The Swedish increase has taken place in principle only among the 20-29 year old age group.

When police chief Anders Thornberg was asked how the trend can be broken, he said that new recruitments are one of the most important factors.

“The most important thing is to break recruitment, make sure we can listen encrypted and that we can get to the profits of crime in a better way,” he said.

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