Riksdag member investigated for alleged abuse

A formal investigation was launched on Wednesday into allegations that a Moderate Party member of the Riksdag abused a woman.

A high ranking public prosecutor has begun an investigation on his own initiative following a series of reports in the Swedish press on rumors of the abuse.

“I’ve based my decision on the assertion in several newspaper articles that a crime has been committed and because Moderate Party leadership at the local, regional, and national level has taken the rumors seriously,” the prosecutor told news agency TT.

“They haven’t dismissed the rumors as simply being the result of ill will.”

An anonymous complaint has also been reported, although the prosecutor said that it hadn’t played a role in his decision.

The woman who suffered the alleged abuse has not turned to police in the matter. According to local media, she is the man’s live-in girlfriend.

The suspected politician hasn’t been questioned in the matter.

The prosecutor said he plans to proceed cautiously. First he wants to determine if there is sufficient reason to presume that a crime has taken place. He plans to speak with a number of people in order to find out if there are any witnesses.

“It’s in the political sphere and I don’t know which dimension that might have,” said the prosecutor.

The Moderate Party leadership in Stockholm held a crisis meeting earlier and discussed the complaints.

“They are very serious allegations, but we don’t want to act like a court; we don’t know what is true or false,” said Lars Linblad, chair of the Moderate Party group in the Riksdag.

Party leaders have also spoken with the accused man.

However Linblad did not wish to discuss what was said. The man continues to carry out his political responsibilities as usual, waiting for the judicial process to move forward.