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Home NATIONALIncidents of stalking increase in 2014
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Mon, 02 Feb, 2015 12:07:11 AM
FTimes – STT Report, Feb 2
 
File Photo Lehtikuva.
More than 630 cases of stalking were reported to the police last year, according to statistics from the Police University College.
 
The figure is two times higher than what was estimated during the phase, when the legislation was under preparation.
 
Stalking became a punishable crime at the beginning of last year.
 
During the first year, District Courts have issued about 20 rulings in stalking cases. 
 
The data can be obtained from verdicts compiled by the Legal Register Centre.
 
The majority of penalties were issued in the form of fines or conditional sentences.
 
All the people convicted were males. Most of them were also convicted of other crimes, such as violation of restraining order and household peace.
 
Organisations that have dealt with the victims of violence or threats of violence consider the new law very important.
 
However, they hope for tougher sentences. The penalty for stalking now ranges from fine to a maximum of two-year imprisonment.
 
“Certainly, quite a few do not consider fine as punishment. In that respect, the sentence does not act necessarily as a deterrent or an impediment,” observed Riitta Särkelä, executive director of the Federation of Mother and Child Homes and Shelters.
 
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