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Självförsvar vid överfall - Nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess

Norrstam, Daniel LU (2010) JUR092 20101
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Denna uppsats har via en rättsdogmatisk metod undersökt gällande rätt avseende nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess vid överfall. Den faktiska rättstillämpningen i underrätterna har inte berörts.

Rätten till försvarsvåld gentemot brottsliga angrepp tillkommer dels den angripne, dels envar som befinner sig på platsen för angreppet. Denna rätt regleras i nödvärnsstadgandet i 24 kap. 1 § BrB. Skulle omfattningen av försvarsvåldet anses vara uppenbart oförsvarligt med hänsyn taget till angreppets beskaffenhet, det angripnas betydelse och omständigheterna i övrigt har försvarsvåldet överskridit nödvärnsrättens ramar. Den åtalade kan ändå frikännas, om omständigheterna vara sådana att denne endast svårligen kunnat besinna sig. Bedömningen av dessa... (More)
Denna uppsats har via en rättsdogmatisk metod undersökt gällande rätt avseende nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess vid överfall. Den faktiska rättstillämpningen i underrätterna har inte berörts.

Rätten till försvarsvåld gentemot brottsliga angrepp tillkommer dels den angripne, dels envar som befinner sig på platsen för angreppet. Denna rätt regleras i nödvärnsstadgandet i 24 kap. 1 § BrB. Skulle omfattningen av försvarsvåldet anses vara uppenbart oförsvarligt med hänsyn taget till angreppets beskaffenhet, det angripnas betydelse och omständigheterna i övrigt har försvarsvåldet överskridit nödvärnsrättens ramar. Den åtalade kan ändå frikännas, om omständigheterna vara sådana att denne endast svårligen kunnat besinna sig. Bedömningen av dessa omständigheter skall göras med hänsyn tagen till farans art, tiden som den tilltalade haft till sitt förfogande och den tilltalades personliga egenskaper. Detta regleras i excesstadgandet i 24 kap. 6 § BrB. För både nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess gäller att lagstiftaren i stor utsträckning har överlåtit de många komplexa tolkningsfrågorna i händerna på domstolarna.

Nödvärnsrätten är allmän, vilket betyder att nödvärnsstadgandet skall anses ingå i alla straffstadganden, inom den allmänna straffrätten såväl som specialstraffrätten. Vidare är stadgandet obligatoriskt, domstolen är alltså tvingad att tillämpa nödvärnsstadgandet om rekvisiten är uppfyllda. Slutligen är nödvärnsrätten objektiv, vilket innebär att det vid försvarlighetsbedömningen skall tas hänsyn till hur situationen faktiskt var, den åtalades uppfattning av situationen spelar ingen roll – han behöver alltså inte ha insett att han var i en nödvärnssituation. Att nödvärnsrätten är objektiv innebär också att det våld som den tilltalade utövat överhuvudtaget inte är brottsligt.

Excesstadgandet är, i likhet med nödvärnsstadgandet, allmänt och obligatoriskt. Dessutom är det osjälvständigt – för att excess skall vara aktuellt så måste någon av de andra ansvarsfrihetsgrunderna i 24 kap. BrB föreligga. Till skillnad från nödvärn är nödvärnsexcess en subjektiv ansvarsfrihetsgrund; detta innebär dels att bedömningen förs utifrån hur den åtalade bedömde situationen, dels att gärningsmannen endast blir ursäktad för sitt försvarsvåld – detta anses dock fortfarande vara brottsligt.

Nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess i sin nuvarande form har en förhållandevis lång historia i svensk rätt. Rättskällorna på området är överens i de grundläggande frågorna. Dock förekommer det på sina ställen oenighet eller tveksamhet angående gränsdragningarna avseende detaljer i nödvärnsrättens försvarlighetsbedömning och nödvärnsexcessens besinningsbedömning. Exempelvis frågan om man har rätt att stanna på platsen och försvara sig mot ett brottsligt angrepp, eller om man är tvungen att, om möjligt, avvika istället för att bruka våld. När det inte rör sig om planerade uppgörelser är rättskällorna relativt klara – det finns generellt sett ingen plikt att bege sig från platsen, utan man har rätt att försvara sig om man föredrar det. På grund av HD:s aningen märkliga domskäl i NJA 2005 s. 237 är läget avseende uppgörelse dock mer svårtolkat, och vad som gäller i sådana fall måste betecknas som oklart.

Huruvida stadgandena om nödvärn respektive nödvärnsexcess är tillämpliga i fall där den angripne, i ett berusat tillstånd, själv provocerat fram angreppet genom verbalinjurier råder det också oenighet om och doktrinen är splittrad i frågan.

Bevisbördan och beviskrav avseende den åtalades invändningar om nödvärn respektive nödvärnsexcess är ett mycket viktigt område, som genom de fö-redömligt tydliga domskälen i NJA 1990 s. 210 dessutom är synnerligen väl utrett. För att den åtalade skall kunna ådömas ansvar krävs det att åklagaren vederlägga dennes nödvärns- eller nödvärnsexcessinvändning. Beviskravet är dock lägre än normalt – det krävs endast att åklagaren förebringar så mycket bevisning att invändningen framstår som obefogad.

Det är min uppfattning att gällande rätt på området stämmer väl överens med lagstiftarens avsikt. Dock finns det naturligtvis alltid utrymme för förbättringar. Dels är planerade uppgörelser och situationer där båda sidor vill slåss ett område där viss otydlighet råder, och som lagstiftningen inte verkar vara särskilt väl anpassad för. Vidare anser jag att det i en avsevärd del av rättskällorna råder en betydande stelbenthet avseende bedömningen av de möjligheter som en person utsatt för ett brottsligt angrepp har att bedöma situationen och resultatet av det försvarsvåld denne använder sig av. Domstolarna, framförallt underrätterna, och viss doktrin tenderar ibland att behandla slagväxlingar väl tekniskt – att räkna slag för slag under de ibland väldigt korta skeendena är enligt min uppfattning ofta verklighetsfrånvänt. Likaså är min uppfattning att det bland rättskällorna generellt sett tas för liten hänsyn till den rädsla och stress som den angripne upplevt när denne försvarat sig mot ett överfall. (Less)
Abstract
This paper is, using a legal dogmatic method, analyzing established law regarding self-defence and excessive self-defence. The actual application of the laws in this field is not analyzed.

The right of defence against violent criminal attacks is granted to the person being attacked, as well as anyone else nearby. This right is prescribed by 24 chapter 1 § Brottsbalken (the Swedish criminal code). To be considered legal, the actions taken to defend against the attack must be considered not obviously unjustifiable by a court of law. When deciding this, the court shall take into consideration the nature of the attack, the significance of the attacked object (the right to self-defence applies to attacks against persons as well as property)... (More)
This paper is, using a legal dogmatic method, analyzing established law regarding self-defence and excessive self-defence. The actual application of the laws in this field is not analyzed.

The right of defence against violent criminal attacks is granted to the person being attacked, as well as anyone else nearby. This right is prescribed by 24 chapter 1 § Brottsbalken (the Swedish criminal code). To be considered legal, the actions taken to defend against the attack must be considered not obviously unjustifiable by a court of law. When deciding this, the court shall take into consideration the nature of the attack, the significance of the attacked object (the right to self-defence applies to attacks against persons as well as property) and other circumstances. Even if the court would find that the defence actions take were actually considered to be obviously unjustified, the accused should not be sentenced if the circumstances during the attack were such that the accused only with a hard effort could restrain himself. When determining how hard it would be for the accused to restrain himself the court shall take into consideration the nature of the hazard created by the attack, the time that the accused had at his disposal and the accused's personal characteristics. Excessive self-defence is regulated in 24. Chapter 6 § Brottsbalken. The legislator have ceded many of the complex questions of interpretation in the hands of the courts.

The right of self-defence is a mandatory rule of law, which means that the court is required to take it into account if the prerequisites are met. The legislation is considered objective, which means that the court should base it’s considerations on the actual situation at hand, not the accused’s perception of the situation. Further, the violence exerted by the accused is not considered criminal, if the court decides that these actions were not obviously unjustifiable.
The accused’s right to use excessive force during certain circumstances is also mandatory. It is however a subjective rule of law, which means that the court should take into consideration the way the accused perceived the criminal attack and the circumstances surrounding it when determining how hard it would be for the accused to restrain himself. It also means that even if the accused is acquitted, the excessive violence exerted by the accused is still considered unlawful.
The right to self-defence and in some circumstances the use of excessive self-defence, has a relatively long history in Swedish law. The legal sources (the criminal code, legislative history, Supreme Court rulings and legal doctrine) are coherent and in agreement on the central and most important matters on the subject. However it exists some areas where the fine details of established law is uncertain.

For example the question of whether one is legally allowed to stay and defend oneself against a criminal attack, or if one is obliged to depart instead of resort to violence. Regarding an unexpected criminal attack it’s generally agreed that the victim is not typically obliged to depart, and is allowed to defend himself. Due to the somewhat obscure ruling of the Supreme Court in NJA 2005 p. 237, the established law regarding planned showdowns must be described as unclear.

There is also disagreement between several legal doctrines regarding the question if the accused is entitled to self-defence and excessive self-defence against a criminal attack instigated by verbal insults made by the accused in an intoxicated state.

The burden of evidence and the standard of evidence regarding the accused’s objection that he has acted in self-defence and/or excessive self-defence is of course an important issue. Thanks to the manifestable ruling of the Supreme Court in NJA 1990 p. 210 these issues have a clear and straightforward solution; the burden of evidence cumber the prosecutor and the standard of evidence is set at a slightly lower lever than usual in Swedish criminal law – the prosecutor needs to produce enough evidence that the accused’s objection of self-defence appears unwarranted.

It is my belief that established law in this field is a fair expression of the legislator’s intention. There is however, as always, room for improvement. The ruling in NJA 2005 p. 237 showed, in my opinion, that the laws regarding self-defence and excessive self-defence are not very well suited for the special problems associated with planned show-downs and similar situations where both participants wants to fight. Furthermore, it is my belief that a considerable portion of the legal sources is showing significant rigidity regarding the evaluation of the possibilities a victim of a violent attack has to asses the situation and the effect each individual blow discharged in defence has on the attacker. The courts, especially the lower courts, and some of the legal doctrine, tend to treat an exchange of blows from a purely technical standpoint, which I believe in the most extreme cases is otherworldy and not in line with the legislator’s intention. I also believe that the legal sources in general does not, to an adequate degree, take into account the fear and stress that the accused is experiencing when trying to defend himself. (Less)
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author
Norrstam, Daniel LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The law on self-defence and excessive self-defence
course
JUR092 20101
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Straffrätt, Nödvärn, Nödvärnsexcess
language
Swedish
id
1669179
date added to LUP
2011-01-27 15:03:10
date last changed
2011-01-27 15:03:10
@misc{1669179,
  abstract     = {This paper is, using a legal dogmatic method, analyzing established law regarding self-defence and excessive self-defence. The actual application of the laws in this field is not analyzed. 

The right of defence against violent criminal attacks is granted to the person being attacked, as well as anyone else nearby. This right is prescribed by 24 chapter 1 § Brottsbalken (the Swedish criminal code). To be considered legal, the actions taken to defend against the attack must be considered not obviously unjustifiable by a court of law. When deciding this, the court shall take into consideration the nature of the attack, the significance of the attacked object (the right to self-defence applies to attacks against persons as well as property) and other circumstances. Even if the court would find that the defence actions take were actually considered to be obviously unjustified, the accused should not be sentenced if the circumstances during the attack were such that the accused only with a hard effort could restrain himself. When determining how hard it would be for the accused to restrain himself the court shall take into consideration the nature of the hazard created by the attack, the time that the accused had at his disposal and the accused's personal characteristics. Excessive self-defence is regulated in 24. Chapter  6 § Brottsbalken. The legislator have ceded many of the complex questions of interpretation in the hands of the courts.

The right of self-defence is a mandatory rule of law, which means that the court is required to take it into account if the prerequisites are met. The legislation is considered objective, which means that the court should base it’s considerations on the actual situation at hand, not the accused’s perception of the situation. Further, the violence exerted by the accused is not considered criminal, if the court decides that these actions were not obviously unjustifiable.
The accused’s right to use excessive force during certain circumstances is also mandatory. It is however a subjective rule of law, which means that the court should take into consideration the way the accused perceived the criminal attack and the circumstances surrounding it when determining how hard it would be for the accused to restrain himself. It also means that even if the accused is acquitted, the excessive violence exerted by the accused is still considered unlawful.
The right to self-defence and in some circumstances the use of excessive self-defence, has a relatively long history in Swedish law. The legal sources (the criminal code, legislative history, Supreme Court rulings and legal doctrine) are coherent and in agreement on the central and most important matters on the subject. However it exists some areas where the fine details of established law is uncertain. 

For example the question of whether one is legally allowed to stay and defend oneself against a criminal attack, or if one is obliged to depart instead of resort to violence. Regarding an unexpected criminal attack it’s generally agreed that the victim is not typically obliged to depart, and is allowed to defend himself. Due to the somewhat obscure ruling of the Supreme Court in NJA 2005 p. 237, the established law regarding planned showdowns must be described as unclear.

There is also disagreement between several legal doctrines regarding the question if the accused is entitled to self-defence and excessive self-defence against a criminal attack instigated by verbal insults made by the accused in an intoxicated state.

The burden of evidence and the standard of evidence regarding the accused’s objection that he has acted in self-defence and/or excessive self-defence is of course an important issue. Thanks to the manifestable ruling of the Supreme Court in NJA 1990 p. 210 these issues have a clear and straightforward solution; the burden of evidence cumber the prosecutor and the standard of evidence is set at a slightly lower lever than usual in Swedish criminal law – the prosecutor needs to produce enough evidence that the accused’s objection of self-defence appears unwarranted.

It is my belief that established law in this field is a fair expression of the legislator’s intention. There is however, as always, room for improvement. The ruling in NJA 2005 p. 237 showed, in my opinion, that the laws regarding self-defence and excessive self-defence are not very well suited for the special problems associated with planned show-downs and similar situations where both participants wants to fight. Furthermore, it is my belief that a considerable portion of the legal sources is showing significant rigidity regarding the evaluation of the possibilities a victim of a violent attack has to asses the situation and the effect each individual blow discharged in defence has on the attacker. The courts, especially the lower courts, and some of the legal doctrine, tend to treat an exchange of blows from a purely technical standpoint, which I believe in the most extreme cases is otherworldy and not in line with the legislator’s intention. I also believe that the legal sources in general does not, to an adequate degree, take into account the fear and stress that the accused is experiencing when trying to defend himself.},
  author       = {Norrstam, Daniel},
  keyword      = {Straffrätt,Nödvärn,Nödvärnsexcess},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Självförsvar vid överfall - Nödvärn och nödvärnsexcess},
  year         = {2010},
}