On Saturday 18 February, Donald Trump threw an unscripted line into his speech at a campaign rally in Florida, suggesting that a major terrorist attack had occurred in Sweden the night before.
He later clarified he was referring to a Fox News report on immigration and crime in Sweden, when he said:
Here's the bottom line. We've got to keep our country safe. You look at what's happening. We've got to keep our country safe. You look at what's happening in Germany, you look at what's happening last night in Sweden. Sweden, who would believe this. Sweden. They took in large numbers. They're having problems like they never thought possible. You look at what's happening in Brussels. You look at what's happening all over the world. Take a look at Nice. Take a look at Paris. We've allowed thousands and thousands of people into our country and there was no way to vet those people. There was no documentation. There was no nothing. So we're going to keep our country safe.
However, data from the Swedish Crime Survey, which takes place annually, has found that crime has not drastically risen for six different types of major offences in recent years:
Murder is not included in this dataset as the rate is so low.
The Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention (Brå) monitor lethal violence, and reported that there were 112 fatal victims of murder, manslaughter and assault in 2015, up 25 from 2014. About the same figure for 2007.
In a long-term perspective, ever since the 1990’s when Brå started the measurements, the trend shows that lethal violence is declining.
Henrik Selin, head of the Department for Intercultural Dialogue at the Swedish Institute said reports from right-leaning media about a surge in immigrant crime have been "highly exaggerated":
So many things are being claimed.
If you look at the facts, there is nothing to support the claim that the crime rate took off after the 160,000 came in 2015.
Jerzy Sarnecki, a criminology professor at Stockholm University, said:
The number of these cases [of lethal violence] have fallen sharply since 1990 but increased slightly in the past two years.
This increase, however, has nothing to do with the recent large refugee wave.
Obviously, the large reception of refugees in a short time causes various types of strains in a small country like Sweden, but these problems are exaggerated greatly by populist movements that are ideologically close to Mr. Trump.