16-year-old found guilty of assault after homeless man’s death in Sweden

16-year-old found guilty of assault after homeless man's death in Sweden
A memorial at the park where the man's body was found. File photo: Adam Ihse/TT
A 16-year-old has been found guilty of the aggravated assault and abuse, but not murder, of a homeless man found dead in a Jönköping park this summer.

The 48-year-old man, locally known as 'Gica' although his real name was Gheorge Hortolomei-Lupu, was found dead in a park in Huskvarna, near Jönköping, on August 8th.

The 16-year-old and a younger boy, 14, were suspected of beating the man to death after harrassing him over an extended period of time. Before kicking the man repeatedly, the boys are accused of throwing objects at the man, and filming parts of the abuse.

The man died of internal bleeding, the autopsy showed. The boy was initially charged with the man's murder, but the court did not find proof that the boys' actions had directly caused the death. Relatives of the man had also requested damages, but since the cause of death was not determined, the boys were not ordered to pay any damages.

The 16-year-old must now spend five months in youth psychiatric care.

READ ALSO: Homeless Romanian murdered in Swedish park remembered as ‘grateful and kind'

The younger boy is below the age of criminal responsibility. Special provisions apply in Swedish law for suspects under the age of 18, with trials against people between the ages of 15 and 17 years required to proceed promptly.

While 16-year-olds can be tried in court, further special legislation applies to suspects under the age of 15. Although the 14-year-old will not undergo a criminal trial and was cleared entirely by the court, social services may decide to place him into care as well.

The investigation has not yet established any motive for the assault.

Member comments

Become a Member to leave a comment.Or login here.