||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2010)|
|Birth name||Sture Ragnar Bergwall|
|Also known as||Sätermannen ("the Säter Man")|
26 April 1950 |
Korsnäs, Falun, Sweden
|Number of victims||Convicted of 3
Acquitted in retrials after convictions in 5 other cases
|Date apprehended||First time: 1969
Last time: 1990
Thomas Quick (born Sture Ragnar Bergwall, a name he has now readopted; 26 April 1950 in Korsnäs, Falun, Sweden) is a convicted Swedish criminal who has previously confessed to more than 30 murders, although he has only eight convictions, five of which have been overturned. With no technical evidence, the only evidence police have held on Quick are his own confessions; elements in these confessions have been judged to match classified facts from the police dossiers on the crimes in question (e.g. clothing and birthmarks of victims). The credibility of Quick's confessions have been widely debated in the Swedish media. Critics of these confessions, and the trials, claim that Quick never murdered anyone, but that he is a compulsive liar. In December 2008, Quick recanted his confessions, and denied taking part in any of the murders for which he was convicted, or any other murders he has confessed to.
About 1990-91, Quick was sentenced to lengthy prison terms for armed robbery and consigned to closed psychiatric care. During therapy, he confessed to some 20 murders committed in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland between 1964 and 1993. One of his confessions led to the solving of an 18 year old murder considered to be unsolvable, and another to the informal solving of a murder in Växjö in 1964. The 1964 crime had passed the then Swedish 25-year limit of punition, but with the information given by Quick, the murderer was considered to be found.
Between 1994 and 2001, Quick was convicted of eight murders at six different district court trials:
- Charles Zelmanovits, Piteå 1976, sentenced in 1994 - no forensic evidence but a confession - retrial granted by the supreme court.
- Johan Asplund, Sundsvall, 1980, sentenced in 2001 - no body, no forensics but confession. Charges waived 03/2012.
- The Stegehuis couple, Appojaure (Gällivare) 1984, sentenced in 1996 - no forensics, but Quick gave information regarding facts that had never been disclosed to the public. His confessions were later questioned, as Quick seemed to have been privy to all information before the trial - retrial granted by the supreme court. Charges waived 05/2013
- Yenon Levi, tourist from Israel, Rörshyttan, 1988, sentenced in 1997 - no forensic evidence, but statements included in Quick's testimony were matched against undisclosed police facts. Charges waived 09/2010.
- Therese Johannesen, Drammen, Norway, 1988, sentenced in 1998 - no forensic evidence. Charges waived 03/2011.
- Trine Jensen, Oslo, 1981, sentenced in 2000 - no forensic evidence. Charges waived 09/2012
- Gry Storvik, Oslo, 1985 - no forensic evidence, confession; the semen found in victim did not belong to Quick. Charges waived 09/2012
(In Sweden a defendant always gets access to the full police investigation before the trial.)
Confessions and subsequent withdrawals 
In the years following 1990, when Quick was sentenced to closed psychiatric confinement, he confessed to several unsolved murders. His first murder, according to his own accounts, occurred in Växjö in 1964, when Quick was only 14 years old. The victim, Thomas Blomgren, was described by Quick as being the same age but not as strong and tall as himself. The second alleged victim was Alvar Larsson, whom Quick claimed to have murdered at Sirkön in the lake Åsnen outside the town of Urshult. According to Quick's sister, Quick never left Falun at the time of this murder. The credibility of Quick's confessions had been widely debated in the Swedish media since 1993, up until 2008, when Quick withdrew all of his confessions. There have been consistent doubts about the reliability of his statements, and some of his confessions have been proven to be fabrications – in some cases the victims have turned up alive and well. Another dubious circumstance is the fact that no witnesses have ever testified to seeing Quick in the proximity of any of the crime scenes, even though more than 10,000 people were interviewed for intricate details.
Critics of these confessions and the trials claim that Quick never murdered anyone, but that he is a compulsive liar. Among the critics are the parents of a child he confessed to having murdered in the late 1970s. In response to these accusations, Quick himself wrote an article for the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter in 2001 in which he said that he refused to cooperate further with the authorities concerning all open murder investigations.
In November 2006, Thomas Quick's trials were reported to the Swedish Chancellor of Justice by retired lawyer Pelle Svensson on behalf of two relatives of a murder victim who wish to have the trials declared invalid.
Several principals in the fields of law and psychiatry, amongst them Swedish police professor Leif GW Persson and secret sources in the Swedish police all claim that Quick has a history of mental illness, but is not guilty of many, if any, of the crimes to which he confessed. Handling of the Quick cases has been described as the "most scandalous" chapter of Scandinavian crime history, branding it as glaring incompetence, naiveté, and opportunism within the police and judicial system.
Quick withdrew all of his confessions in 2008 during the taping of a TV documentary. Quick's attorney now contends that the prosecution withheld important investigative material from the defence (which the prosecution adamantly denies). Quick's attorney also maintains that his client is mentally ill and had been under the influence of narcotics prescribed by a doctor when he confessed to the killings.
Thomas Quick, now Sture Bergwall, recanted his confessions and requested the Svea Court of Appeal order a new trial for the murder case of Yenon Levi at Rörshyttan. In December 2009, the court of appeals granted a retrial of the Yenon Levi case. As the prosecutor found that the evidence was not sufficient, Quick moved for a judgment of acquittal, and he was acquitted in September 2010.
Quick's counsel also declared his intention to ask for a retrial of the Therese Johannesen case, claiming that Quick has an alibi for the day when Therese Johannesen was abducted and murdered. SKL (Statens kriminaltekniska laboratorium, State Forensic-Technical Laboratory) found in March 2010 that two forensic objects which the prosecution had claimed were bone fragments were in fact small pieces of charred wood. A retrial was granted, and Quick was formally acquitted when the prosecutor dropped the charges.
- Kvarblivelse (1998)
- Thomas Quick är död (2009)
- Day, Elizabeth (20 October 2012). "Thomas Quick: the Swedish serial killer who never was". The Observer.
- Råstam, Hannes (2012). Fallet Thomas Quick : Att skapa en seriemördare (in Swedish). Ordfront. ISBN 978-91-7037--604-7.
- "Quick retracts serial murder confessions", The Local - Sweden's News in English, December 15, 2008.
- Borgström, Claes (15 April 2010). "Jag anmäler mig själv till advokatsamfundet". Dagens Nyheter (in Swedish). Retrieved 31 August 2010.
- Av: Ntb. "Visste Quick var uskyldig". bt.no. Retrieved 2012-10-20.
- Thomas Quick del 1 (Swedish). Sveriges Television (hosted on YouTube).
- Stockholm, Sweden News, April 20, 2009
- Bergwall, Sten-Ove (1995). Min bror Thomas Quick: en berättelse om det ofattbara. Stockhol: Rabén Prisma. (Swedish)
- Quick, Thomas (1998). Kvarblivelse. Stockholm: Kaos Press. (Swedish)
- "Quick-mål har anmälts till JK" (Swedish). Dagens Nyheter. 20 November 2006. Archived from the original on 1 October 2007.
- "Court orders retrial in new serial killer case". The Local - Sweden's News in English. 26 September 2010.
- "Thomas Quick frikänd för mord" (Swedish). SvD Nyheter. 3 September 2010.