Swedish Court Slammed for Using Sharia Law to Settle Domestic Violence Case
Swedish legal experts have slammed a court in Solna after it ruled that a Muslim man who was accused of beating his wife was innocent because he came from a “good family” while the woman did not.
The court ruling was passed by two judges who argued that is was “not uncommon for women to falsely claim they have been assaulted”, and said that the Muslim woman reporting the abuse was less credible in her case because she reported the violence to the police rather than attempt to solve it within the Muslim community, Aftonbladetreports.The court decision was heavily criticised by legal experts like the former president of the Swedish Bar Association Bengt Ivarsson who wrote on Twitter: “This is one of the most prejudiced and strange judgements I have read. Not completely unexpectedly dictated by two lay judges. Still, no one in charge wants to do something about the lay judge system.”
The “lay judge” system is a peculiarity of Swedish law in which municipal governments appoint lay judges to work alongside professional judges in certain cases where they replace a jury.The two lay judges in the case were appointed by the Centre Party whose leader Annie Lööf was quick to condemn the acquittal. One of the judges, Ebtisam Aldebe, who advocated for special laws for Muslims in 2014, has been pressured to resign.
One of the Centre Party’s leading members in Solna, Magnus Persson, said he had spokenwith Aldebe saying she had defended her ruling. Persson added that such rulings were not welcome in the Centre Party.
The other Centre Party judge involved in the case, Hasan Fransson, announced that he would be stepping down from all political posts.
While many have acknowledged the influence of Muslim migrants in no-go suburbs in Sweden, such as feminists in Stockholm, the case is the first time sharia law has influenced a case in the country’s court system.
Despite pushback from Swedish legal experts against sharia law in this case, demographic trends suggest that Sweden will become one-third Muslim by the year 2050 and makes the prospect of continued legal challenges inevitable.