Minister for Justice and Home Affairs Morgan Johansson has presented an offensive package of measures to fight international burglary rings. The measures will strengthen preventive efforts by the responsible authorities, and criminal investigation activities will be intensified.
International burglary rings are often controlled by organisers in their home countries and operate in several countries in Europe. In Sweden, these types of burglary rings are responsible for more than half of all burglaries and the majority of all thefts regarding boat motors, car parts, agricultural machinery, etc. The Government is today presenting a range of measures to fight international burglary rings.
Historic investment in the Swedish Police
As previously announced, the Swedish Police Authority will receive the largest investment in modern times – SEK 7.1 billion between 2018–2020. Based on the Government’s national crime prevention programme ‘Combating crime together’, the police will make it more difficult for burglary rings.
Export of stolen goods will be prevented
The Government will task the Swedish Police Authority, Swedish Customs and the Swedish Coast Guard with increasing their efforts to stop the export of stolen goods. The Swedish Coast Guard will also be given greater powers to take action against burglary rings.
Tougher penalties for burglary and refusal of access
Victims of a burglary suffer a violation of their privacy, and greater account must be taken of this when determining a penalty. An inquiry will therefore examine the possibilities of tightening the penalties for organised and systematic thefts and offences concerning handling stolen goods. The possibility of issuing refusal of access orders to shops, etc., will also be examined.
More people will serve prison sentences in their home countries
Since taking office, the Government has engaged in active dialogues with several countries, including Romania, to make it easier for people who have been sentenced in Sweden to serve their prison terms in their home country. However, the Government wants more people to serve their sentences in their home countries. The Swedish Prison and Probation Service will therefore be instructed to streamline the process of transferring prison sentences, and the conditions on urgency with regard to shortening processing times will be examined.
Increased opportunities for camera surveillance
The Government will move ahead on a legislative proposal involving the removal of a permit requirement for camera surveillance in areas such as agriculture and forestry. The legislative proposal will also make it easier for police and municipalities to be granted permits for closed-circuit cameras. An inquiry is also currently examining the possibilities of removing the permit requirement regarding camera surveillance for the Swedish Police and Swedish Customs.
More international cooperation
In 2018, the Government will introduce several international initiatives to tackle the problem of international burglary rings. For example, the Government is conducting dialogues with the countries of origin of the burglary rings, introducing deeper international police cooperation and presenting initiatives in the EU.
Expanded checks in areas close to the border
The Government will instruct the Swedish Police Authority to examine what new conditions are required to conduct checks in areas close to the border. Relevant measures may include automatic camera surveillance involving number plate and vehicle recognition at our border crossing points.