By: V4 Agency
Most rapes in Sweden are committed by immigrants, Swedish researchers have found. Their study also shows that the perpetrators often have no criminal record, thereby avoiding the attention of law enforcement agencies.
A research team at Lund University conducted a study on a sample of over 3 thousand people aged 15 to 65, who had been convicted of rape or attempted rape in the period between 2000 and 2015. This was one of the most comprehensive and largest studies conducted on rape in the country, said Ardavan Khoshnood, the main author of the document that summarised the study’s findings.
The researchers’ goal was to gain in-depth knowledge of the rapists’ background that could be used by law enforcement in the future.
The study found that during the 15-year period under examination, 60 per cent of the rapes were committed by people who were, or at least one of their parents was, born in another country. Fully, 40 per cent of those convicted were born in a foreign country. Even Ardavan Khoshnood, of Iranian descent, found these high figures staggering. He said he knew that the numbers are probably high, but he was not expecting such exorbitant figures.
There are many sex offenders who have an otherwise clean criminal record, meaning they had not been convicted of anything before. More than three-quarters of the cases under investigation fall into this category, and these criminals are classified by police as low-risk offenders. This, however, may be a problem because as authorities tend to only keep track of repeat offenders, these so-called clean-slate offenders receive no special attention.
Many immigrants belong to this category, but the situation with Swedish sex offenders is somewhat more complex. Another discovery in the study, which the researchers decided to exclude, is that a larger percentage of Swedish rapists have a history of crime compared to migrant sex offenders. Poviding an explanation, lead researcher Kristina Sundquist said they did not want people to think that Swedes tend to commit sex crimes because they have plenty of problems, whereas immigrants simply just rape many women, regardless of any of their issues.
According to the professor, there may be socio-economic reasons behind the fact that there is a large number of immigrant rapists and sex offenders. She thinks immigrants are often marginalised by society and addictions and inter-dependencies go hand in hand with crime.
Ms Sundquist also expressed concern that she and her colleagues working on the report may become the target of attacks for highlighting the role migrants play in terms of rape. The professor said she expects repercussions because it is a delicate topic, adding that people must be very careful when choosing their words these day.