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Public Masturbation Is NOT Okay In Sweden

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Contrary to earlier reports, it is not actually ok to wander around masturbating in Sweden.

In news that may be disappointing to some, it turns out the world's media may have got a bit over-excited when reports first emerged that public masturbation had been decriminalised.

The news stemmed from a 65-year-old man having been acquitted after touching himself on a local beach, in what was incorrectly described as a "landmark" case.

In a case of journalistic Chinese Whispers, quotes originally given to Mitt i Stockholm by public prosecutor, Olof Vrethammar, became lost in translation.

According to the court ruling, no offence had been committed as the masturbating man was not pleasuring himself towards a specific person.

It did not then take long before frenzied reports emerged stating that stripping off and playing with yourself would be fine -- as long as you're not aiming your gaze, or genitals, at anyone while doing so.

Vrethammar has now said the ruling was wildly blown out of promotion and that people should not start getting the wrong idea, in an interview with the English-language Swedish news website the Local.

"There has been a lot of reaction to this case but I think what has happened is that my words have been taken out of context a bit.

"I read somewhere that this was a 'landmark trial' but that is not the case," Vrethammar explained.

"It is not okay to masturbate in public in Sweden as we have the same laws as anywhere else on this type of behaviour."

Lena Egelin, the Chief Judge at Stockholm's High Court, told Vice magazine people needed to calm down and zip up their trousers.

"In Sweden, you're not allowed to do something that is considered to be offensive behaviour. And you shouldn't do something to please your sexual needs in front of people because that's molestation.

"It's always a matter of evaluation in each particular case. And that's why you might get rulings that appear to be weird sometimes," she said.

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