A Swedish court on Tuesday sentenced a 17-year-old man to eight years in prison for stabbing his sister 107 times in what judges called an honor killing.
The teen, who was 16 at the time, was convicted of killing his 19-year-old sister at her home in the southwestern town of Landskrona on April 23 last year.
He had called emergency services and said a masked attacker had killed her, but investigators said his story didn’t hold up against evidence found at the scene.
“The court found the man guilty of the murder and that the motive was to restore the family’s honor,” the Lund district court said in a statement. It said that “despite the man’s young age,” it was sentencing him “to a long prison sentence, and has set it at eight years.”
The names and nationalities of the brother and sister were not disclosed, but media described the family as being of Iraqi origin.
The sister had told friends and family that she was worried her life was in danger, after she fled from Iraq, where she had been reportedly married against her will to an older man whom she claimed beat and raped her.
Once in Sweden, she contacted social services in Landskrona, but she said they did not take her family’s threats against her seriously, Swedish media reported.
The court meanwhile refused to pay damages to the victim ‘s mother and a half-sister born to the same father, arguing the relatives did not have close relationships with the deceased.
The lawyer for the convicted teen called the sentence “extremely harsh” and said he planned to appeal.
The 19-year-old woman, identified only as Maria, died after being stabbed more than 100 times in the back, head, neck and abdomen, the Swedish news agency TT reported.
The suspect said that his dying sister begged him to call a friend for help when he found her in her Landskrona apartment.
“The medical examiner found that her windpipe had been cut. Therefore, she couldn’t have spoken with her brother,” prosecutor Magnus Larsson told the court Monday.
A recording the woman made days before her death was played in court.
“When I was 15, I was raped and married off,” she could be heard saying.
The recording was meant for a women’s support group, Tank Om [Think Again] and was on the topic of “honor” violence.
“It’s possible to prove that Maria lived within an honor culture and that the accused and the rest of the family had opinions about her way of life,” said attorney Elisabeth Massi Fritz.