Danish war veteran to be held indefinitely for murdering parents

A Danish court on Wednesday ordered a 43-year-old former soldier to be held indefinitely for the murder of his parents.

Danish war veteran to be held indefinitely for murdering parents
Flowers left outside of the house of the suspect's parents. File photo: Bo Amstrup/Scanpix
The war veteran was arrested last summer on charges that he murdered his parents and then stored their bodies in his car. He also faces charges of improper conduct with his parents' corpses.  
The 43-year-old has been held in Sikringsafdelingen, Denmark's only secured psychiatric ward, since his arrest and the Randers City Court on Wednesday declared that he will remain there indefinitely. 
Upon his arrest, the man was diagnosed as “acutely mentally ill or in a similar state”.
Police say that the man killed both of his parents in their home in the town of Uggelhuse near Randers. He allegedly struck them numerous times in the head and body with an axe before then wrapping their bodies in plastic sacks and blankets and putting them in his vehicle. 
The former soldier has admitted to killing his parents, but according to press reports following his arrest, he appeared confused and upset at his initial court appearance. 
The 43-year-old is reported to have suffered from post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after his active military duty. He served in Bosnia during the 1990s Yugoslav wars.
In court this week, the man said that he felt as if his parents were trying to run his life. 
“They had an idea that I was a soldier with PTSD, that I should receive a pension and help them to put their house in order,” he said, according to news agency Ritzau. 
The man said that tensions within the family came to a head in July of last year. He said his father was holding an axe when the former soldier took it by force and then struck his parents. He then cleaned their house and put the bodies of his parents in plastic bags that he stored in their vehicle. He was arrested a few days later. 
Experts testified in court that the former soldier was clinically insane at the time of the murders and that he continues to suffer from psychosis. 
The 43-year-old said in court that he understands that he is mentally ill and that he will likely need treatment for the rest of his life. 
The Randers City Court decision on Wednesday means that the man will continue to be held in Sikringsafdelingen and that within five years the court will reconsider his mental state. If he is still deemed to be in need of psychiatric care at that point, additional evaluations will then be made every second year. 


Why Copenhagen police say crime is on the up in Christiania

Crime in Copenhagen’s hippie enclave of Christiania is increasing, police in the capital say following a number of drugs-related arrests.

Why Copenhagen police say crime is on the up in Christiania

Copenhagen Police arrested three men on Saturday for selling cannabis on Pusher Street in the alternative enclave of Christiania, as they continue their efforts to stamp out the area’s former open-air cannabis market. 

According to police, 875 people were arrested for selling cannabis in the first 11 months of 2022, more than in any other year over the past four years. 

A possible explanation for the increase in arrests could be that the rewards for operating hash stands have receded, according to a police spokesperson.

“It is extremely unattractive to stand out there, and therefore a lot of new people come in who have no idea what it is all about. Many of them come from outside the catchment area, and some of them are peripherally associated with a criminal group,” Simon Hansen, head of a Copenhagen Police special unit, told newspaper Politiken.

“It’s a bit – in inverted commas – ‘easier’ for us to catch these people,” he said. 

Around half of the stalls in the street are linked to various gangs and biker gangs, such as Satudarah, Bandidos, Hells Angels and Loyal To Familia, with the rest run by people living in Christiania, the Berlingske newspaper reported earlier this month.

The trend of rising crime occurs against a background of potential housing develop in Christiania, as the enclave’s residents decide on a plan to put affordable housing in the area.

Copenhagen Police last year told news wire Ritzau that the majority of people who are arrested within Christiania come from socially underprivileged or marginalised backgrounds.

They are exploited in gang and biker circles, resulting in them in some cases operating the illicit hash market stalls, according to the police.

Conflicts between organised crime groups have reportedly become more frequently aired in the Pusher Street market.

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