Malmö, Sweden. Two of the teenagers, who were allegedly involved in the drugging and gang rape of a woman in the Malmö district of Lindängen in early February, have been reportedly detained by police. A total of seven teenageers are now suspected to have been involved in the violent and shocking attack. Two of them are only 13 years old.
By – Brünnhilde
After the horrifying attack in Fittja involving at least 20 perpetrators “with a migrant background” who watched and filmed a 23-year old woman being raped for over 4 hours on a building stairwell, Sweden was rocked with emotional outrage which exploded into disbelief and anger when the rapists were released without punishment. But it seems as if similar cases of violent group rapes are continuing to follow and in addition, the perpetrators are revealed to have extremely low ages, some as young as 13.
Seven teenage boys between the ages of 13 and 16 are suspected of having kidnapped and sexually assaulted an adult woman for ten hours. One of the suspects, a 15-year-old, boy was picked up for interrogation during the day and was later arrested on Wednesday evening by prosecutors. He is therefore the seventh suspect to be detained in connection to the violent rape attack. The police have previously stated that the woman who has been raped must have been drugged.
A 15-year-old and a 16-year-old have already been sentenced in connection to the serious rape. According to the police, they carried out the rape that lasted from 23:00 on Friday night 2 February to 9:00 the day thereafter, in another words, for approximately ten hours. One of the suspects lives in the vicinity of the room where the rape occurred.
A total of six suspects were arrested by police during Tuesday. Two of the four boys who were arrested during Tuesday have been released, but are still suspects. Unlike their older comrades, police and prosecutors have no way of detaining them. This is due to the fact that they are only 13 years old. They can therefore neither be detained nor sentenced to imprisonment but have been surrendered to social services.
The police will continue to investigate the boys to find out if they were involved but the court has no power to punish them due to their young age.
The case is considered extreme because it involves a grave sexual offense with so many offenders and because the suspected perpetrators are so young.
Catharina Finne, Head of Unit for Social Services, Innerstaden, is asked to comment generally on what she thinks of such young people suspected of serious rape.
“I’m getting worried. My first thought is whether these are people we know about and what is available for ongoing investigation in such cases, since we have to start the investigation and safety assessment immediately,” she says .
“When children are suspected of such gross crime, social services enter directly after receiving the information,” says Catharina Finne.
“Child suspects in gross crime, there have always been warning signs in the past – they rarely debut their criminal path by participating in a group violence,” says Catharina Finne.
The case triggered further outrage with the Swedish public when national broadcaster SVT attempted to portray the attackers as “victims” during their coverage of the rape case. Police officers implied the attackers did not fully understand the gravity of their crime due to their young age and included a TV presenter stating that “young people who commit these type of crimes are often considered victims themselves.” The victim was not mentioned once.
Lindängen is one of the areas in Malmö that was recently added last year on the police’s new list of vulnerable no-go areas. Previously, Rosengård and Seved were on the list. In last year’s report, Nydala, Hermodsdal and Lindängen joined the Malmö area.
Read more: From 2018/07/10