Swedish 'cannabis fika' lands guests in hospital
Sophie Inge · 5 Aug 2015, 12:20
Published: 05 Aug 2015 12:20 GMT+02:00
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If you have Swedish friends, you have probably one time or another been invited over to someone's house for a traditional 'fika'. This usually involves things like coffee and cake. It usually does not include drugs.
But a 25-year-old in the Södervärn area of Malmö, southern Sweden, is now being investigated by police after he served a cake seasoned with the drug to his two friends, a 55-year-old woman, and a 45-year-old man.
On Tuesday evening police received a call from the hospital from the confused male guest saying that he had been poisoned.
“He said that he had eaten a cake at a friend’s house and that he felt very strange afterwards and thought he had been poisoned,” Linda Pleym, a spokesperson for Malmö police, told The Local.
“He said that there was still a woman there who had also eaten the cake.”
The man gave police the address, where police found a woman in the same confused state as well as the man thought to be behind the poisoning.
“He wanted to be kind to his friends and invite them for coffee and cake – chocolate cake with cannabis. And he didn’t tell the others. So it was a hefty overdose,” Mats Attin from Malmö police told TT.
The woman was also taken to hospital where she and the other man are still recovering.
The suspect was arrested and taken to the police station where he admitted that he had put cannabis in the cake. He is suspected of drug offences and inflicting bodily harm, however police are convinced that he was not out to harm anyone.
Last month, The Local reported that a total of 904 cannabis farms were reported to police in 2014 – more than quadruple the 211 reports officers received in 2004, according to the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brottsförebyggande rådet, BRÅ).
Sweden has by and large a 'zero tolerance' approach to drugs, although calls for legalizing the drug are sometimes heard. The Nordic country criminalized illicit drug use in 1988, following a two-year attempt to introduce a more tolerant approach that was considered a failure by authorities.
Anyone suspected of being 'high' can be detained and given a compulsory urine test. If positive, they are slapped with a criminal charge and must stand trial.
According to figures released by the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction (EMCDDA) last year, only nine percent of the Swedish school population has tried cannabis, compared to 39 percent in France, 42 percent in the Czech Republic and around 25 percent in Britain, Belgium and the Netherlands.