The six-day trial of the Malå murder in mid-February was concluded on Thursday evening. The legal examination is unprecedented in Skellefteå’s criminal history.
Four individuals – a teenage boy, a 20-year-old man, a 50-year-old man and a 40-year-old woman – are charged for the murder of a 30-year-old man.
The prosecutor has described that the four are members of a family constellation and that there is a motive of revenge. The accused claim that the murder victim had previously subjected one of the murder suspects and another person to violations.
After the questioning of a man who visited Laggträsket where the police found burned knives and textiles, a chief physician (see the fact box) and a witness who, according to lawyer Jens Nyström, gives the 50-year-old an alibi, it was time for the parties to plead in the matter of guilt and sanctions,
The pleading continued until around eight in the evening, which Norran also reported on live.
Prosecutor Linnea Hedström:
She was very clear: the four people are to be sentenced ”jointly and severally” for the murder using the most severe punishment available: life imprisonment.
The only exception is the teenage boy who turned himself in to the police and who admits aggravated assault (one stab to the victim's body).
In this case the prosecutor is of the opinion that he, due to his young age, instead shall be sentenced to four years of institutional care of young persons which is the maximum punishment for this type of sanction.
However, the prosecutor said that the penal value for the act, would also have been life imprisonment for the teenager.
She said that the evidence – DNA traces from the victim, the 20-year-old and the 40-year-old found on a knife at the murder scene, the victim's blood in the woman’s car and in her family’s laundry room, the fact that the 50-year-old and the woman had gone to burn knives, masking, clothes and a backpack, the fact that neither of them had been active on their phones around midnight when the murder was committed, the confession of the teenage boy and his pointing out other co-suspects as well as the motive – connects these four to the act.
Linnea Hedström said that it was the 20-year-old who inflicted most of the stab wounds, that the teenager stabbed the victim at least once, that the 40-year-old woman came to the residence armed with a knife and that the 50-year-old was in their car parked near the victim's home:
– In the period leading up to the murder he had expressed various threats to the life of the victim and he has, with his presence at the time and scene of the crime, supported the others in their intent.
The prosecutor saw a number of aggravating circumstances that supports the claim for life imprisonment:
– The victim has been murdered in cold blood in his own home, he was dehumanised in numerous ways in these circles, they took the law into their own hands, the violence was senseless with twenty stabs and the victim’s severe agony of death.
Counsel for an injured party Linda Sundlöf:
She agreed with what the prosecutor had said and supplemented the statement with several items and highlighted again that the murder of the 30-year-old was ”a pure execution”.
She and the prosecutor also highlighted the strength of one of the witnesses, that is the sibling, who described how the 20-year-old brother had confessed to the murder and said that their mother and the teenager also participated:
– The witness has, with his testimony, shown extreme courage of conviction and guts, he wanted the truth to come out.
The woman’s lawyer Ulf Holst:
He petitioned for his client to be acquitted, that the evidence does not hold up. It is not possible to connect the technical evidence to the woman, was his message.
The 20-year-old’s lawyer Erik von Ahn:
He said that his client should be acquitted, that the prosecutor’s evidence of DNA and blood traces cannot with certainty be connected to the 20-year-old.
The teenage boy’s lawyer Fredrik Elveros:
He said that his client should be convicted of aggravated assault. Considering the ”age discount” and that his client has contributed with information that has moved the investigation forward, the sanction should be juvenile detention or youth supervision.
The 50-year-old’s lawyer Jens Nyström:
He pointed out that his client should be acquitted and that the evidence does not hold up either to the classification of murder or gross protection of a criminal.
At nine in the evening the announcement came from the District Court: the four defendants are still suspected with probable cause for the murder and shall stay in custody awaiting the sentence.
Thereby much points towards convictions.
A chief physician, a specialist in forensic medicine was questioned on the victim’s injuries, how they were inflicted, the cause of death and the post-mortem examination.
The victim, who bled to death, received twenty stab wounds to the back of the body and to the throat.
There are signs that the victim has been bent forward on his knees during the attack.
The chief physician said that ”in principle” no injuries were sustained while warding off the attackers which points to an attack from behind.