Last week I posted a translated German article about less affluent areas of the Swedish city of Gothenburg that are now ruled by immigrant gangs. A policeman named Ulf Boström explained the way the criminal gangs use intimidation and extortion to run a lucrative protection racket.
Below are three brief videos and an article from SVT (Swedish public television) about the situation in Gothenburg that include interviews with Ulf Boström. Many thanks to Gary Fouse for the translations, and to Vlad Tepes and RAIR Foundation for subtitling the videos.
The accompanying article from SVT:
Policeman in tears after question on Gangs’ hidden victims: “Completely without a chance”
June 26, 2021
Swedish entrepreneurs have lost their families, their work, or have been forced to move out of the country in fear of being killed, SVT’s review shows.
The reason: They are systematically extorted by criminal networks. Now Gothenburg police officer Ulf Boström sounds the alarm that the problem is gigantic and that the police cannot protect the victims.
“Either you pay or you resist, and your life is completely ruined,” he says.
Start the clip to see the emotional interview with police officer Ulf Boström-who explains who is affected, and the powerlessness he feels in the face of the problem.
Integration policeman Ulf Boström has worked in northeast Gothenburg for 16 years. His telephone rings all the time. Worried mothers of gang members, imams, and people who don’t understand a document they receive from an official.
Boström: Therefore, the police cannot protect victims
He meets many of the people who live under constant threat of death, those who pay the gangs and family-based criminal networks, and those who refuse. He believes that police cannot protect those who report, even if they receive protected living.
“It is only temporary, and few who get protection in this way have a full life. Since for so long we have let this activity spread over all of Sweden, the gangs are in all the bigger cities. They have eyes and ears everywhere.”
SVT News-West for several years has met with about ten people around Sweden who refuse to pay. The victims are primarily people with a foreign background. The criminals see that they are easier to approach, according to Boström.
“If you don’t have a big family that can protect you, you are completely without a chance,” he says.
Tries to make politicians understand
He has long fought to make others understand that organized crime is so much more than attention-getting shootings. Ulf Boström is engaged in the local Democrat party, and in 2019 made news when he reported 300 Swedish ISIS members for aiding and abetting murder.
Video transcript #1:
|00:01||You just have to harden yourself, as they say.|
|00:05||No, take that away.|
|00:08||Policeman in tears after SVT’s questions|
|00:11||Extortion a gigantic problem|
|00:15||Those who have money in the form of a business activity…|
|00:19||It can be a candy business, a tobacco business, a restaurant…|
|00:23||It can be a hair salon business. It is important that the business is used or owned|
|00:28||by someone with an immigrant background.|
|00:32||Either you pay and try to live a normal life in silence|
|00:36||and don’t tell anybody.|
|00:40||Or you resist, and thus completely ruin your life|
|00:45||But how widespread is it here?|
|00:50||We have no… We have no statistic on that.|
|00:55||And seeing that this threat culture is so gigantic,|
|01:01||and people thus remain silent,|
|01:04||and so they destroy those who are vulnerable for this|
|01:07||and they don’t dare make a sound.|
|01:11||How does this feel?|
|01:16||You just have to…|
|01:20||You just have to harden yourself, as they say.|
|01:24||No, take it away.|
|01:31||The greatest powerlessness is that you can’t…|
|01:39||in a calm and quiet conversation, explain this|
|01:43||to those who have the highest responsibility within the police authorities.
Video transcript #2:
|00:02||Those who expose them to crime call them their brothers, their friends…|
|00:09||They come here, they get free food, or they get free candy,|
|00:14||or they get a free haircut. It’s not just that they are so devilishly extorted.|
|00:22||Those who are extorted have to also appear happy when they come.|
|00:29||If we just go there when we see that a crime has happened on the surface…|
|00:35||Yes, then we come in, investigate and leave.|
|00:40||People are exposed to crime 24/7, in that illegal threats hang over you 24/7.|
|00:46||So we have to reintroduce socially persistent police who work pro-actively,|
|00:53||so that they, in an effective way, can protect people in their daily work.
Video transcript #3:
|00:05||Josef came to Sweden a few years ago. He doesn’t get a job, but rather starts a kiosk.|
|00:09||The kiosk goes well, people like both him and the kiosk.|
|00:13||After a few months one year, two men come to the kiosk.|
|00:17||They want to give him protection.|
|00:20||Josef doesn’t need any protection. He never had anything to do with criminality,|
|00:23||so he says no to that. After a few days, his wife’s sister calls.|
|00:28||She and her two small children were threatened by two men on the street where they live.|
|00:34||Now Joseph begins to understand what it is about.|
|00:38||He contacts the police, who wonder what crime was committed.|
|00:41||He has a little difficulty in answering, so he waits.|
|00:44||Suddenly, one day, the entire kiosk is smashed to pieces.|
|00:47||Now he begins to understand it’s serious. He tells the men he’ll think about getting their protection.|
|00:52||The problem is that the protection slowly transitions into a partnership.|
|00:57||Not on paper, but economically.|
|01:00||The men begin to take more and more money from the kiosk and commit crimes in the kiosk.|
|01:04||They begin to sell drugs in a kiosk that is in Josef’s name.|
|01:09||Now there is an alternative: He can give them the keys to the kiosk and leave.|
|01:13||They will run it in his name, maybe take out a loan, conduct criminal business|
|01:17||and launder money in his name, but he can perhaps, make a life for himself.|
|01:22||The alternative is he can fight for his kiosk; this is all he has.|
|01:26||That is where most often the hell begins.|
|01:29||Police can help Josef. They can give him a secret identity and move him to another location,|
|01:35||but that means that he leaves all his friends and his home.|
|01:38||Often [unintelligible] that his wife and children|
|01:41||increasingly do not want to live this life, so they leave Josef.|
|01:44||Now he has no kiosk, no home, no family, and he lives in a location where he knows nobody.