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Riksrätten - En utredning av statsråds rättsliga ansvar i tjänsteutövningen genom en historisk och nordisk belysning

Bokefors, Jesper LU (2019) JURM02 20191
Department of Law
Faculty of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Makten att styra Sverige tillkommer statsråden, vilka utgör regeringen. Regeringsmakten begränsas genom lagbundenhet och funktionsfördelning. Riksdagens funktion är bland annat att kontrollera statsrådens arbete. Statsråden har ett såväl politiskt som rättsligt ansvar inför riksdagen. Uppsatsen utreder ifall regelverket för statsråds rättsliga ansvar för handlande i tjänsteutövningen är tillfredsställande.

Specialregler gäller för statsråds rättsliga ansvar i tjänsten, vilket även har varit fallet historiskt. 1809 års regeringsform stadgade en maktdelning mellan kung och riksdag. Kungen var ensam beslutsfattare och var ansvarsfri för besluten. Ansvariga var istället kungens rådgivare, statsråden. Åtal väcktes av Konstitutionsutskottet... (More)
Makten att styra Sverige tillkommer statsråden, vilka utgör regeringen. Regeringsmakten begränsas genom lagbundenhet och funktionsfördelning. Riksdagens funktion är bland annat att kontrollera statsrådens arbete. Statsråden har ett såväl politiskt som rättsligt ansvar inför riksdagen. Uppsatsen utreder ifall regelverket för statsråds rättsliga ansvar för handlande i tjänsteutövningen är tillfredsställande.

Specialregler gäller för statsråds rättsliga ansvar i tjänsten, vilket även har varit fallet historiskt. 1809 års regeringsform stadgade en maktdelning mellan kung och riksdag. Kungen var ensam beslutsfattare och var ansvarsfri för besluten. Ansvariga var istället kungens rådgivare, statsråden. Åtal väcktes av Konstitutionsutskottet och drevs av Justitieombudsmannen. Prövningen gjordes av en specialdomstol, Riksrätten som bestod av statliga tjänstemän. Påföljden kunde bland annat bli avsättning från tjänsten. Riksrätten trädde i funktion vid fem tillfällen, mellan 1818–1854, alla gånger friades de tilltalade. Därefter upphörde regelverket att tillämpas.

Kritik mot regelverket i 1809 års regeringsform framfördes under lång tid men reglerna höll sig intakta tills att den nuvarande 1974 års regeringsform trädde i kraft. Dagens reglering kännetecknas av en kontinuitet från tidigare regler. Samma organ som tidigare beslutar om och driver åtal. Riksrätten är däremot upphävd och målen prövas av Högsta domstolen som första och enda instans. Endast grovt åsidosättande av tjänsteplikten är straffbart. Det är inte längre möjligt för domstolen att döma statsråd till avsättning. Något åtal har inte väckts under det nuvarande systemet.

I Norge, Danmark och Finland finns liknande regler. En skillnad är dock att länderna fortfarande har en riksrätt. Riksrättens sammansättning är en blandning mellan juristdomare och ledamöter valda av ländernas respektive parlament. Under 1990-talet fälldes före detta statsråd för handlande i tjänsteutövningen i såväl Danmark som Finland.

I den avslutande delen dras slutsatser kring ifall regelverket är tillfredställande. Därutöver redogörs för egna reflektioner och förslag till reformer. (Less)
Abstract
The power to govern Sweden belongs to the ministers, who form the government. The governmental powers are limited by law and by distribution of functions. One of the functions of the parliament is to monitor the work of the ministers. The ministers have both a political and a legal responsibility before the parliament. This essay examines whether the legal framework regarding the responsibility that ministers have for their actions in office is satisfying.

Special rules apply for ministers’ actions in office, which has also been the case historically. The Instrument of government act of 1809 was based on a division of powers between the king and the parliament. The king was the supreme decision maker but without responsibility for his... (More)
The power to govern Sweden belongs to the ministers, who form the government. The governmental powers are limited by law and by distribution of functions. One of the functions of the parliament is to monitor the work of the ministers. The ministers have both a political and a legal responsibility before the parliament. This essay examines whether the legal framework regarding the responsibility that ministers have for their actions in office is satisfying.

Special rules apply for ministers’ actions in office, which has also been the case historically. The Instrument of government act of 1809 was based on a division of powers between the king and the parliament. The king was the supreme decision maker but without responsibility for his decisions. Instead the king’s counsellors, the ministers were responsible. The Committee on the Constitution decided over prosecution which was operated by the Parliamentary Ombudsman. A special Impeachment court was in charge of the trial. The court´s judges consisted of public officials. Sanctions could include removal from service, among other things. There were five Impeachment processes, between 1818-1854, and the defendants were found innocent in all cases. After these processes, the legislation ended in practice.

The legislation of the Instrument of government act of 1809 was criticized throughout a long period of time, but the regulation was held intact until the Instrument of government act of 1974 came into force. The legislation of today is characterized by continuity from the earlier regulations. The same authorities decide over and operate the prosecution. However, the Supreme Court has taken over the work of the Impeachment court and examines the lawsuits as the first and only instance. Only grave infringements of the minister’s duties are punishable. It is no longer possible for the court to remove ministers from their service. There have been no prosecutions with the current legislation.

Norway, Denmark and Finland have similar rules, although these countries still have an Impeachment court, which consist of a mix of judges with legal background, and judges selected by the parliament in each country. During the 1990’s, ex-ministers in both Denmark and Finland were sentenced for actions they had committed in office.

In the last part of the essay, conclusions are drawn whether the legislation is satisfying. In addition to this, my own reflections and proposals of reforms are described. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
Bokefors, Jesper LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
The Impeachment court - An examination of ministers legal responsibility in office through a historical and a nordic illustration
course
JURM02 20191
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Statsrätt, Rättshistoria, Komparativ rätt
language
Swedish
id
8977157
date added to LUP
2019-06-10 15:29:34
date last changed
2019-06-10 15:29:34
@misc{8977157,
  abstract     = {The power to govern Sweden belongs to the ministers, who form the government. The governmental powers are limited by law and by distribution of functions. One of the functions of the parliament is to monitor the work of the ministers. The ministers have both a political and a legal responsibility before the parliament. This essay examines whether the legal framework regarding the responsibility that ministers have for their actions in office is satisfying. 

Special rules apply for ministers’ actions in office, which has also been the case historically. The Instrument of government act of 1809 was based on a division of powers between the king and the parliament. The king was the supreme decision maker but without responsibility for his decisions. Instead the king’s counsellors, the ministers were responsible. The Committee on the Constitution decided over prosecution which was operated by the Parliamentary Ombudsman. A special Impeachment court was in charge of the trial. The court´s judges consisted of public officials. Sanctions could include removal from service, among other things. There were five Impeachment processes, between 1818-1854, and the defendants were found innocent in all cases. After these processes, the legislation ended in practice. 

The legislation of the Instrument of government act of 1809 was criticized throughout a long period of time, but the regulation was held intact until the Instrument of government act of 1974 came into force. The legislation of today is characterized by continuity from the earlier regulations. The same authorities decide over and operate the prosecution. However, the Supreme Court has taken over the work of the Impeachment court and examines the lawsuits as the first and only instance. Only grave infringements of the minister’s duties are punishable. It is no longer possible for the court to remove ministers from their service. There have been no prosecutions with the current legislation. 

Norway, Denmark and Finland have similar rules, although these countries still have an Impeachment court, which consist of a mix of judges with legal background, and judges selected by the parliament in each country. During the 1990’s, ex-ministers in both Denmark and Finland were sentenced for actions they had committed in office. 

In the last part of the essay, conclusions are drawn whether the legislation is satisfying. In addition to this, my own reflections and proposals of reforms are described.},
  author       = {Bokefors, Jesper},
  keyword      = {Statsrätt,Rättshistoria,Komparativ rätt},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Riksrätten - En utredning av statsråds rättsliga ansvar i tjänsteutövningen genom en historisk och nordisk belysning},
  year         = {2019},
}