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Ett svart får eller bara en lite udda fågel? - Straffvärdebedömningen i narkotikamål ur ett rättsutvecklings- och koherensteoretiskt perspektiv

Olafsson, Stefan LU (2018) JURM02 20181
Department of Law
Faculty of Law
Abstract
In Swedish courts, over a period of more than 30 years, a practice of punishment was developed in drug cases, which largely differed from those of other types of crime. The penal value assessment in the area was basically governed entirely by tables based on the art and amount of drugs. A comprehensive practice review took place between 2011 and 2013. The conclusion was that all relevant circumstances in the individual case should influence the penal value. Effects of this were that the tables would only be a starting point for continued assessment and that the penal values for drug offenses were drastically reduced.

The present paper addresses the question as to whether and in what case the previous penal value assessment in drug cases... (More)
In Swedish courts, over a period of more than 30 years, a practice of punishment was developed in drug cases, which largely differed from those of other types of crime. The penal value assessment in the area was basically governed entirely by tables based on the art and amount of drugs. A comprehensive practice review took place between 2011 and 2013. The conclusion was that all relevant circumstances in the individual case should influence the penal value. Effects of this were that the tables would only be a starting point for continued assessment and that the penal values for drug offenses were drastically reduced.

The present paper addresses the question as to whether and in what case the previous penal value assessment in drug cases was incorrect in relation to the sanctions system as a whole, and to what extent any problems were resolved as a result of the change of practice and whether new problems arose as a consequence of this. In the review, the thesis from a legal development perspective in the field of drug crime law in general and the assessment of penal value are specifically deleted. In addition, a coherent theoretical perspective on the penal value assessment is made both before and after the change of practice.

The essence of the essay is the penal value assessment in drug cases. As a basis for this, I first describe the emergence of the Swedish drug penal law as well as the meaning of the terms penal value and proportionality. As regards the assessment in drug cases, the paper shows how practices were developed until June 2011, when the so-called Mefedrondomen began the process of conversion. Within a time span of a couple of years, another 12 judgments were released for the subject up to the Supreme Court. The essay goes through all of them and reports their significance. The new crime breach, particularly severe drug offense, was a consequence of the change of practice. The purpose of the new degree was that even larger amounts of drugs should be important in the range of punishment. Increased nuance and thus higher proportionality were good effects of the reorganization, as well as making the sanctions system more coherent. Less good effects were the deterioration of effectiveness and predictability in the law enforcement, and the fact that larger amounts of drugs became disproportionately small in the assessment of the penal value - even after the particularly severe crime was introduced.

The essay concludes that the penalty assessment prior to the change of practice was incorrect in such a way that the penalty determination was applied in a way that deviated from the general rules and principles. In a thoughtful chart of the punishment of different types of crime, drug offense was a nail that stood straight up, contributing to incoherence in the penalty system. The reason that this was accepted was that the very strict view of the drug issue established in Sweden in the 1980s was followed by the courts and allowed to influence the assessment of the penal value. It took almost 30 years since the wrong course was set until the then Justice Council Martin Borgeke first through the doctrine and then through his role in the Supreme Court led the development in a different direction.

Another conclusion is that there is a value in having the same or at least similar application to all types of crime - i.e. that it is pursuit of coherence within the penalty system. The reason for this is that lack of coherence within a system weakens its legitimacy. The rules and principles related to the assessment of crimes and the determination of sanctions should be equal regardless of the type of crime. This means that, although in some respects drug offenses are a bit odd, it cannot be accepted that the punishment assessment for the type of crime is. On the contrary, it is important that the application takes place in a similar manner throughout the sanctions system. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
I svenska domstolar utvecklades under en period av över 30 år en påföljds-praxis i narkotikamål som i hög grad avvek från vad som gäller för andra brottstyper. Straffvärdebedömningen inom området styrdes i princip helt och hållet av tabeller grundade på arten och mängden narkotika. En omfattande praxisomläggning ägde rum åren 2011 till 2013. Omläggningen medförde att samtliga relevanta omständigheter i det enskilda fallet skulle tillmätas bety-delse för straffvärdet. Effekter av detta blev bl.a. att tabellerna endast skulle vara en utgångspunkt för fortsatt bedömning och att straffvärdena för narkoti-kabrott sänktes drastiskt.

I föreliggande uppsats behandlas dels frågan om och i så fall på vilket sätt den tidigare... (More)
I svenska domstolar utvecklades under en period av över 30 år en påföljds-praxis i narkotikamål som i hög grad avvek från vad som gäller för andra brottstyper. Straffvärdebedömningen inom området styrdes i princip helt och hållet av tabeller grundade på arten och mängden narkotika. En omfattande praxisomläggning ägde rum åren 2011 till 2013. Omläggningen medförde att samtliga relevanta omständigheter i det enskilda fallet skulle tillmätas bety-delse för straffvärdet. Effekter av detta blev bl.a. att tabellerna endast skulle vara en utgångspunkt för fortsatt bedömning och att straffvärdena för narkoti-kabrott sänktes drastiskt.

I föreliggande uppsats behandlas dels frågan om och i så fall på vilket sätt den tidigare straffvärdebedömningen i narkotikamål var felaktig i relation till på-följdssystemet som helhet, dels i vilken utsträckning eventuella problem åt-gärdats till följd av praxisomläggningen och om nya problem uppstått till följd av denna. I granskningen utgår uppsatsen från ett rättsutvecklingsperspektiv ifråga om narkotikastraffrätten generellt och bedömningen av straffvärde spe-cifikt. Dessutom anläggs ett koherensteoretiskt perspektiv på straffvärdebe-dömningen såväl före som efter praxisomläggningen.

Kärnan i uppsatsen utgörs av straffvärdebedömningen i narkotikamål. Som underlag för detta redogörs först för den svenska narkotikastraffrättens fram-växt samt innebörden av begreppen straffvärde respektive proportionalitet. När det gäller bedömningen i narkotikamål visar uppsatsen hur praxis utveck-lades fram till juni 2011, då den s.k. Mefedrondomen inledde praxisomlägg-ningen. Inom loppet av ett par år släpptes ytterligare tolv domar av betydelse för ämnet upp till Högsta domstolen. Uppsatsen går igenom samtliga och re-dovisar deras betydelse. Den nya brottsrubriceringen synnerligen grovt nar-kotikabrott var en konsekvens av praxisomläggningen. Syftet med den nya graden var att även större mängder narkotika ska ha betydelse högt upp i straffskalan. Ökad nyansering och därmed högre proportionalitet var goda effekter av omläggningen, liksom att påföljdssystemet blev mer sammanhäng-ande. Mindre bra effekter var försämrad effektivitet och förutsebarhet i rätts-tillämpningen samt att större mängder narkotika fick oproportionerligt liten betydelse vid straffvärdebedömningen – även efter att det synnerligen grova brottet införts.

I uppsatsen anförs att straffvärdebedömningen före praxisomläggningen var felaktig på så vis att påföljdsbestämningen tillämpades på ett sätt som avvek från de regler och principer som gäller allmänt. I ett tänkt diagram över på-följdsbestämningen av olika brottstyper var narkotikabrottsligheten en spik som stod rakt upp, vilket bidrog till inkoherens i påföljdssystemet. Orsaken till att detta accepterades var att den mycket stränga synen på narkotikafrågan som under 1980-talet etablerats i Sverige följt med in i domstolarna och tilläts påverka straffvärdebedömningen. Det tog närmare 30 år från det att den fel-aktiga kursen sattes till dess att dåvarande justitierådet Martin Borgeke först genom doktrin och sedan genom sin roll i Högsta domstolen satte ned foten.

I uppsatsen dras slutsatsen att det finns ett värde i att ha samma eller åt-minstone liknande tillämpning gällande alla brottstyper – d.v.s. att det är efter-strävansvärt med koherens inom påföljdssystemet. Orsaken till detta är att bristande koherens inom ett system försvagar dess legitimitet. De regler och principer som har att göra med bedömningen av brott och bestämmande av påföljd bör vara lika, oberoende av brottstyp. Det innebär att även om narkoti-kabrottsligheten i vissa avseenden är en lite udda fågel, kan det inte accepteras att straffvärdebedömningen avseende brottstypen är det. Tvärtom är det av vikt att tillämpningen sker likartat inom hela påföljdssystemet. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Olafsson, Stefan LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
A black sheep or just a little odd bird? - Penal value assessment in drug cases from a legal development and coherence theoretical perspective
course
JURM02 20181
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
straffrätt, straffvärde, proportionalitet, narkotika, koherens
language
Swedish
id
8939506
date added to LUP
2018-06-08 14:01:28
date last changed
2018-06-08 14:01:28
@misc{8939506,
  abstract     = {In Swedish courts, over a period of more than 30 years, a practice of punishment was developed in drug cases, which largely differed from those of other types of crime. The penal value assessment in the area was basically governed entirely by tables based on the art and amount of drugs. A comprehensive practice review took place between 2011 and 2013. The conclusion was that all relevant circumstances in the individual case should influence the penal value. Effects of this were that the tables would only be a starting point for continued assessment and that the penal values for drug offenses were drastically reduced.

The present paper addresses the question as to whether and in what case the previous penal value assessment in drug cases was incorrect in relation to the sanctions system as a whole, and to what extent any problems were resolved as a result of the change of practice and whether new problems arose as a consequence of this. In the review, the thesis from a legal development perspective in the field of drug crime law in general and the assessment of penal value are specifically deleted. In addition, a coherent theoretical perspective on the penal value assessment is made both before and after the change of practice.

The essence of the essay is the penal value assessment in drug cases. As a basis for this, I first describe the emergence of the Swedish drug penal law as well as the meaning of the terms penal value and proportionality. As regards the assessment in drug cases, the paper shows how practices were developed until June 2011, when the so-called Mefedrondomen began the process of conversion. Within a time span of a couple of years, another 12 judgments were released for the subject up to the Supreme Court. The essay goes through all of them and reports their significance. The new crime breach, particularly severe drug offense, was a consequence of the change of practice. The purpose of the new degree was that even larger amounts of drugs should be important in the range of punishment. Increased nuance and thus higher proportionality were good effects of the reorganization, as well as making the sanctions system more coherent. Less good effects were the deterioration of effectiveness and predictability in the law enforcement, and the fact that larger amounts of drugs became disproportionately small in the assessment of the penal value - even after the particularly severe crime was introduced.

The essay concludes that the penalty assessment prior to the change of practice was incorrect in such a way that the penalty determination was applied in a way that deviated from the general rules and principles. In a thoughtful chart of the punishment of different types of crime, drug offense was a nail that stood straight up, contributing to incoherence in the penalty system. The reason that this was accepted was that the very strict view of the drug issue established in Sweden in the 1980s was followed by the courts and allowed to influence the assessment of the penal value. It took almost 30 years since the wrong course was set until the then Justice Council Martin Borgeke first through the doctrine and then through his role in the Supreme Court led the development in a different direction. 

Another conclusion is that there is a value in having the same or at least similar application to all types of crime - i.e. that it is pursuit of coherence within the penalty system. The reason for this is that lack of coherence within a system weakens its legitimacy. The rules and principles related to the assessment of crimes and the determination of sanctions should be equal regardless of the type of crime. This means that, although in some respects drug offenses are a bit odd, it cannot be accepted that the punishment assessment for the type of crime is. On the contrary, it is important that the application takes place in a similar manner throughout the sanctions system.},
  author       = {Olafsson, Stefan},
  keyword      = {straffrätt,straffvärde,proportionalitet,narkotika,koherens},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Ett svart får eller bara en lite udda fågel? - Straffvärdebedömningen i narkotikamål ur ett rättsutvecklings- och koherensteoretiskt perspektiv},
  year         = {2018},
}