Swedish far-right lawmaker convicted over nightclub assault

Stockholm
28 Jun 2017

A Swedish court on Wednesday convicted a far-right lawmaker of assault and fined him 38,400 kronor (3,900 euros, $4,500) after an assault outside a Stockholm nightclub last year. The Stockholm district court said Kent Ekeroth, a 35-year-old MP for the anti-immigration Sweden Democrats, hit a man waiting in line to enter the club in the face on November 24.  Ekeroth argued that he acted in self-defence because he feared an escalation after being verbally mocked. But the court found that this was "not the case", saying that Ekeroth "at the time had not been exposed to any beating or physical assault from the plaintiff or anyone else." Ekeroth was reportedly furious at being refused entry into the upscale Stockholm nightclub, and said he was provoked by the victim who mocked him as he walked away. "This is a completely incorrect verdict. The prosecutor in no way disproved my self-defence objection," Ekeroth wrote on Facebook on Wednesday, adding that he planned to appeal the ruling. He has been at the centre of several scandals throughout his political career, and was recently suspended by his parliamentary group and dismissed as the international secretary of the Sweden Democrats, which is seeking to give itself a more respectable image.
In 2012, a video emerged from 2010 of Ekeroth filming two other Sweden Democrat colleagues shouting racist abuse at two men and calling a woman who tried to intervene a "whore". The same video showed Ekeroth and his colleague Erik Almqvist, 31, picking up iron bars after a heated argument with a drunken man outside a fast-food restaurant in Stockholm. A poll this month found that the party would be the second-largest in Sweden if elections were held today. (AFP)