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CRIME

Teen confesses to Swedish jogger’s murder

A man has confessed to the murder of a 21-year-old Swedish woman who went missing after a going out for a run in early August.

Teen confesses to Swedish jogger's murder
Ida Johansson, who was found dead on a running track in Upplands Väsby. Photo: Polisen
A 19-year-old man has confessed to killing Ida Johansson, who was found dead in the early hours of August 6th in the Runby area of the Stockholm suburb of Upplands Väsby.
 
A tip-off from a member of the public saw police officers arrest the man on Thursday evening, and he confessed in the first round of interrogation soon after.
 
The man, who was not known to police previously, was caught by police after a witness placed him at the scene on the night of the crime. A DNA test confirmed that he had been in the area at the time of Johansson's death.
 


Tributes left at the running track in the Runby area of Upplands Väsby. Photo: Vilhelm Stokstad/TT
 
The search for the killer was extensive, seeing police comparing the DNA of over 800 men with traces found at the crime scene.
 
Police refused to go into details about the motive of the murder, nor any other details of the investigation, and did not comment on whether the woman had been a victim of a sexual assault. 
 
The murder stirred debates in Sweden about female safety while out running. Just days after the woman was found dead, thousands of people took to tracks across the Nordic country in the much-publicized 'Run with love' campaign to pay tribute to Ida – and to show defiance in the face of fear.
 
The 19-year-old confessed to the high-profile murder on Thursday. Photo: TT

POLITICS

Swedish party leader calls for chemical castration of sex offenders

Sweden's Christian Democrats have called for tougher sentences for sex offenders and making release conditional on chemical castration.

Swedish party leader calls for chemical castration of sex offenders

The Swedish Christian Democrats (KD) leader has called for the chemical castration of certain sex offenders as part of plans for a tougher grip on sexual crime and punishment in Sweden.

Speaking to the Swedish parliament on July 1st, KD party leader Ebba Busch said, “Every day, 27 rapes are reported. How many days must pass before the government takes action?”

“Today we propose that rapists and people who commit sexual crimes against children should be able to be chemically castrated.”

The controversial chemical castration proposal was the headline grabbing soundbite in a broader set of proposals to recalibrate the structure of Sweden’s sexual crime sentencing.

Among KD’s proposed sentencing changes is a life sentence for the aggravated rape of a child, the removal of automatic conditional release for sex offenders, and an increase in the sentence for aggravated rape up to a maximum of 25 years.

In addition, they want a “monitoring period” for convicts who have been released, equivalent to one third of the sentence served.

They also want to establish a national knowledge centre for sexual violence where people who feel that they have “problematic sexuality” can receive support. The center must also “be able to administer chemical castration on a voluntary basis to those who are concerned about unwanted sexual thoughts and impulses and have a compulsive sexuality”.

READ ALSO: What’s the Swedish Christian Democrats’ abortion contract all about?

Chemical castration, she suggested, should be implemented as a condition of release for some sexual offenders. “It may mean that if a person like Nytorgsmannen is to be able to become a free man, a chemical castration must have taken place before the release,” Busch said, referring to Andreas Holm, a man sentenced in 2021 for 35 different crimes including 24 rapes.

But this is not the first time the Christian Democrats have toyed with the idea of chemical castration as a form of legal punishment. As far back as 20 years ago, under former leader Alf Svensson, the right-wing party raised the idea of conditional chemical castration of rapists and pedophiles.

At the time the proposal was rejected by all other parties.

Chemical castration, the process of preventing sex hormone production through chemicals, can reduce sexual libido but the effects on those with deviant behaviours are relatively unknown.

Chemical castration can also prove costly as it is not a one-off treatment but rather requires regular interventions, which means the police would be reliant on those sentences to chemical castration making regular trips to the authorities for further treatment.

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