Wednesday, December 5

Finnish Triple-Murderer to Go Free

One year after Finnish triple-murder Juha Valjakkala was captured after walking away from a jail with no walls, comes news that he is to be released from imprisonment.

After 19 years in prison, Finland’s longest-serving life prisoner, triple murderer Nikita Joakim Fouganthine, 42, has been granted parole, starting from July 1st 2008.

In practice, Fouganthine will be out of prison already in February-March next year, because he will have to serve a probationary period before full parole is granted.

Currently Nikita Fouganthine, formerly known as Juha Valjakkala, is serving a life sentence in Kuopio prison, after killing a family of three in Ã…msele, Sweden, in 1988. - Helsingin Sanomat

OK, technically speaking, did not exactly escape. He just left without permission:

Leaving an open institution is not considered as an escape. If a prisoner has left the institution without permission, he can be ordered as a disciplinary punishment a loss of served time at most 20 days. In 2005 18 (27 in 2004) prisoners left an open institution without permission. - Prison Service

He must have had a good reason to leave, because being in prison in Finland is almost like not being in prison at all. I guess he has served his 20 days for escaping. The police suspect that he stole a car to get away, not that you would know it given that he is being freed so quickly after his last escape attempt. So I guess he got no punishment for that.

Now don't worry about having a convicted murderer on the loose, he is going to be monitored:

Fouganthine, like all parolees, will be strictly monitored for example by GPS localisation using a mobile phone. - HS

Yeah, like he can't just leave his phone behind or let the battery die. He was being 'strictly monitored' at the open institution and yet he managed to escape for days. At the time, it was admitted that placing him in an open institution was a mistake. Yet, now they plan to place him back into an open society.

I give this guy less than one year before he is arrested again. I also suspect that he'll leave Finland within a month.

Apparently Swedes are somewhat pissed that he is being let go. It was three Swedes that he brutally murdered. However, it is the Nordic 'forgiving' attitude that is partly the reason for his release, and the reason why he was never executed for his crimes. This is an attitude that Sweden has subscribed to. So it should not be a surprise to anyone that he is being let go. What is surprising is how long he was actually kept behind bars. We probably have the murderer to thank for due to his multiple escape attempts. However, he should not be held fully responsible for any further crimes he commits once released. It is the system that is partly responsible from this point forward.

Finnish Triple-Murderer Escapes from an 'Open Institution' - FFI 29 Nov 06
Life prisoner Nikita Fouganthine to be paroled in near future - Helsingin Sanomat

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