She has served as Municipal Commissioner of Lund 1983-91, Minister of Justice 1991-94, member of the Riksdag, chairman of the Riksdag Committee on Justice 1994-2001, President of the Nordic Council 1999, Director General of the Swedish Patent and Registration Office since March 2001. Also chairman of the board of the University College of Borås since 2004. Laila Freivalds was both her predecessor and successor to the office of Minister of Justice.
Hellsvik is known for her tough stance on drugs. She opposes dispensing clean needles to drug addicts, as it in her mind undermines trust in the law. As Minister of Justice, she oversaw a legal change that made it a crime to be under the influence of an illicit drugs, even in the absence of drug possession; she also authorized the police to forcibly obtain urine and blood samples from a suspected individual. She lauds the American war on drugs, claiming that "as so many times before, the United States, is showing us the right path" (). In a motion to parliament entitled "Strong measures against narcotics" (Krafttag mot narkotika;) she supported among other things lifetime imprisonment for narcotics crimes, allowing the police the take urine and blood samples from small children to promote early detection of drug abuse and to authorize the police to routinely induce vomiting in individuals suspected of having swallowed narcotics; the proposals were voted down by parliament.
|Minister for Justice