cross-posted from:

The killer was only 14 and had lived in youth homes as a ward of the authorities since he was eight.

A year ago, a gang helped the boy escape, put him up in a hotel and gave him cannabis, food and new clothes. Six days later, gang members told him it was time to repay them for their kindness. They had a job for him.

Together with another youth, the boy, who as a juvenile cannot be identified, shot dead a 33-year-old Hells Angels biker. He was convicted by a court which described the case as a gangland contract killing.

As he was too young to be sentenced, he was handed back to social services and sent to another youth home.

Sweden has long prided itself on one of the world’s most generous social safety nets, with a state that looks after vulnerable people at all stages of life.

But these days it also has another distinction: by far the highest per capita rate of gun violence in the EU. Last year 55 people were shot dead in 363 separate shootings in a country of just 10 million people. By comparison, there were just six fatal shootings in the three other Nordic countries - Norway, Finland and Denmark - combined.