Thankfully Sweden's nasty, and soon 15-year-old, law that bans buying sex has not resulted in any convicted sex buyers spending time behind bars.
In 2011, 'Justice' Minister Beatrice Ask previously raised the red flag about supposedly lenient sentencing doled out in Swedish courts. In July 2012, the law was rewritten, allowing courts to send offenders to jail for a maximum of one year, rather than
the six months previously allowed.
Yet the rewrite has had little effect, noted Johan Linander, Centre Party MP and vice-chairman of Riksdag Committee on 'Justice' (Justitieutskottet). He whinged to the Local:
The courts make limited use of the range of sentencing available to them
A review of sentencing in the past few years by the Dagens Nyheter newspaper revealed that no one has been sentenced to prison for buying sex from an adult - neither before nor after the reform.
We see that the courts use the lower quarter of punishments with little variation, which is true for most crimes, not just sex purchases, said Linander, who has long argued that the punishments needed to be stricter.
Social Democrat MEP Anna Hedh, said she was hesitant toward filling Swedish prisons up with one-time offenders:
BUT ... if you are a repeat offender, you should of course end up in jail.