Government wants to ban secret photos

Published torsdag 20 december 2012 kl 11.48

The Swedish government has proposed a ban on people taking photos that are "personally violating". This would come into effect on July 1st 2013.

The proposed ban, outlined in a referral to the Council on Legislation, would apply to photographs taken without permission and in secret and where the person pictured is in a private space or  in a space where privacy is expected, such as a public toilet or a changing room.

The proposed penalty is fines or a prison sentence of up to two years.

This is the second time that the government has proposed a ban on this kind of photography. However, it has chosen to not push for a law against spreading offensive images.

The new proposal states more clearly than the previous one in which spaces the ban would apply.

Those spaces include private residences, but not private gardens. The ban could also apply in cases where a photographer stands outside and takes pictures through a window.

In order to be punishable the photographs must have been taken in secret.

Where photographs have been taken in conjunction with news reporting for media protected by the constitution, courts will need to weigh integrity violation considerations against the public interest.