William Petzäll, an independent MP in Sweden has died while the exact cause of death has not been confirmed it is believed to have been related to drugs. Mr Petzäll had previously quit the Swedish Democrats in order to focus on his battle with substance abuse but opted to remain and independent in parliament.
He was convicted of drug related offences in May in response to his conviction he told one web site that “it’s ridiculous to punish people who are suffering from addiction”. Since leaving the Sweden Democrats Petzäll has been focusing on drug policy and the way drug users are treated by the health and criminal justice systems saying that "It's horrible that drug addicts are stigmatized in the way they are. You can't stereotype immigrants or homosexuals, but all drug users are lumped together into a group that deserves to be punished with fines or prison."
Swedish drug law is not very progressive one Swedish writer in the wake of Mr Petzäll has compared Sweden’s drug policy to that Catholic Churches view on condoms. Drug users in Sweden are treated more like criminals than patients and are more likely to end up in prison than rehab. It is therefore not surprising that Sweden has a usually high drug related death rate with roughly 400 people dying each year.