A Syrian man claimed to be a doctor and performed circumcisions on nine boys. He used a soldering gun to carry out the act. The criminal has been given a suspended sentence, community service and a $10,000 fine.
He’s a resident of the city of Gavle and is said to be in his 30s. He was charged with assault, causing bodily harm and violating Sweden’s law on circumcision. As reported by the court, some of the victims complained it was painful to walk after what was done to them. Prosecutors had asked for a two-year sentence.
However, on some counts the charges cannot be proven because there is no established link between the procedures and symptoms the boys went through.
If the court had opted for a prison term, the defendant could have faced up to eight months behind bars.
Instead, he received a suspended sentence and 180 hours of community service. He will also have to pay SEK 55,000 ($6,400) in damages, plus a SEK 33,000 ($3,800) fine.
The heinous act took place between April and May 2018 in Gavle and in neighboring Soderhamn.
Guardians of the boys reportedly contacted the man, who is a Syrian citizen, through the Bilaal preschool for Muslims. He was paid around $230 for his services.
Sweden demands that circumcisions are performed by licensed medical experts using proper surgical instruments under safe conditions. The man who claimed to be a trained doctor back in Syria didn’t have a license to practice in Sweden. Medics who inspected his work told the court that they doubted his credentials.
A board member from the Bilaal School, who served as a go-between, has since been suspended and is facing deportation.
The school was shut down in December last year by the municipality over a failure to meet the requirements of Swedish education laws.