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Home affairs minister suggests review after terror trip acquittal

Updated fredag 9 december 2016 kl 14.13
Published fredag 9 december 2016 kl 11.18
Ygeman: Sweden should look to neighbours
(0:47 min)
Anders Ygeman and Stefan Löfven.
Credit: Thomas Johansson/TT

The minister for home affairs has suggested a review of Sweden's anti-terror legislation after a man who was the first person charged under a new law of travelling with the intent of joining a terrorist group was acquitted for a second time.

The 25-year-old’s case was being heard at the Court of Appeal after he had originally been found not guilty at the Attunda District Court in Stockholm in June.

He had been accused of trying to travel to Syria to join the Jihadi group Jabhat al-Nusra.

The man, who lives in Södertälje, west of Stockholm, was stopped by Turkish police at Istanbul Airport in April, less than two weeks after the new law came into force.

He was travelling on a one-way ticket and in his bag was a bulletproof vest, camouflage uniform and knee pads. He had also searched for Jabhat al-Nusra on his phone, the court had heard.

He has always maintained that he was travelling to Syria to perform humanitarian work.

The Court of Appeal said the prosecutor failed to prove "that the man had intended to commit a terrorist offence, which is a prerequisite for criminal liability".

Minister for Home Affairs Anders Ygeman said he thought Swedish law would have to be reviewed.

"A broad review, so as to ensure we refine the anti-terror legislation we have today, which is partly a patchwork quilt that has emerged over a very long period of time," he said.

"And I think we must then also look at our neighbouring countries, Norway, Denmark, Germany, as to how to achieve a legally secure and efficient anti-terror legislation."

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