Claim: Swedish Crime Stat Agency Forced to Change Findings for Political Reasons

A riot police officer stands guard while colleagues extinguish burning barricades on the m

A report has claimed that employees of the Swedish Crime Prevention Council (Brå) have been pressured by management to manipulate and obfuscate findings for political purposes.

The report, which was released by researchers at Linköping University, claims that those working at the agency testified that the management of Brå had pressured them to “change findings which, for political, ideological or other reasons, were not desirable”, Nyheter Idag reports.

“If results were not liked, then there was censorship, organisation of results, dimming of results, and highlighting other parts of a study that were not as sensitive or could show a positive result,” one employee said.

The researchers claim that one Brå employee presented findings that were deemed politically controversial and when they presented them in a meeting, the employee was told the report would not be released.

“Both interviews and what happened during the data collection indicate that there seems to be a culture of silence within Brå and there seems to be an effort to hire people who are perceived as easy to control,” the report states.

Malin Wieslander, one of the authors of the study, defended the fact that all of those interviewed were kept anonymous, saying: “Of course, it would have been better if we could have been completely open. But because individuals in this study are so vulnerable, we have chosen to protect them.”

“However, in our opinion, the collected material is sufficient for the reader to be able to create a true image. Just that there is a risk of distorted information is a problem in itself,” Wieslander added.

One of the most politically charged debates in Sweden in recent years has been the relationship between mass migration and crime rates. Last year, Brå announced it would be considering a new report on migration and crime, the first in several years.

While many, including Prime Minister Stefan Löfven, have denied any link between rising violent crime and mass migration, several studies from Swedish media have shown migrants make up the majority of assault rapists and, in cities like Malmö, foreign-background individuals make up the majority of suspects in shootings.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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