Swedish Police No Longer Allowed to Describe Alleged Criminals

“We want to avoid pointing out ethnic groups as criminal.”

The Swedish news website Speisa is reporting that an internal letter to police in Stockholm instructs police they are to refrain from describing suspects' race and nationality.

Local Swedish paper Svenska Dagbadet said it had seen the letter, which outlines how law enforcement can notify the public of crimes. Crimes that “involve everything from lighter traffic accidents to serious crimes like muggings, beatings and murder,” the paper reported.

The letter specifies that, for everyday crimes such as burglary, basic information such as ethnicity, nationality, skin colour and height should not be given.

The memo was written by Stockholm press officer Wolf Gyllander and Calina Skagerlind and said that crimes should be reported via the police website, without description.

“We want to avoid pointing out ethnic groups as criminal,” said Mr Gyllander.

“Criticism is sometimes made against police regarding information about people’s skin colour. It is perceived as racist.

“As police are not racist, nor shall be constructed as so, this directive now applied,” read the letter.

The letter was dated September 15, 2015 and written a few weeks after a festival in Stockholm where there were numerous sexual assaults.