December 28, 2012 - Assignment

Aftonbladet wins case in Supreme Court regarding Swedish gaming monopoly

On 20 December 2012, the daily evening newspaper Aftonbladet won a principally important victory in a case in the Supreme Court of Sweden. The case was originally initiated in the District Court in 2003 and concerned the issue of whether or not advertising for foreign based gaming companies in Aftonbladet, and in other Swedish media channels, is an infringement of the Swedish Lotteries Act, which was claimed in the case by the Prosecution Authority, represented in the Supreme Court by the Public Prosecutor.

Defendants in the case were Aftonbladet’s previous Editor-In-Chief Anders Gerdin and the daily evening newspaper Expressen’s previous Editor-In-Chief Otto Sjöberg. The case has been deemed to concern advertising revenues for Swedish media companies amounting to a total of half a billion Swedish kronor per year.

The Supreme Court established that the rule in the Lotteries Act that the Prosecution Authority’s case relied on is in conflict with EU law and may not be implemented and therefore acquitted the defendants.

Aftonbladet and its previous Editor-In-Chief Anders Gerdin were represented in the case by Mannheimer Swartling, through partner Stefan Widmark and associate Evelina Anttila.