Skip to main content

Former Sabaton guitarist Rikard Sundén convicted of child sex abuse, possession of child pornography

Sabaton performs on stage on day 2 of Sonisphere festival on July 31, 2010 in Knebworth, England
(Image credit: Christie Goodwin/Getty Images)

Guitarist Rikard Sundén, a founding member of Swedish power-metal band Sabaton and who most recently played in Civil War, has been charged and convicted in a Swedish court of sexual abuse of an eight-year-old girl, as well as of possession of child pornography.

The report comes courtesy of MetalSucks, which obtained official court documents that state that Sundén molested his daughter’s friend during an overnight stay. Additionally, authorities seized two computers and a mobile phone of Sundén’s, which contained six films of underage children committing sexual acts.

Sunden was found guilty of one count of child sexual abuse and six counts of possession of child pornography. He was sentenced to nine months in prison and a fine of SEK 53,400 (approx. $6,000).

According to the documents, the girl, who is referred to as NN3 to protect her identity, claimed that during the overnight stay Sundén snuck into her room, lifted her blanket and began touching inside her clothes and her intimate parts. The girl pretended to be asleep but eventually moved, at which point Sundén left the room.

The girl initially kept the incident quiet, but a few days later shared details with a friend. The friend told her mother, who then alerted the girl’s mother, who reported the incident to police on March 6, 2020. 11 days later, the girl gave testimony to authorities.

MetalSucks reports that Sundén denied the claim of sexual abuse, stating that he had entered the room to check to make sure the girl had fallen asleep, as she seemed to be having trouble doing so inside a "makeshift fort that the friends had constructed on the floor."

“His theory is that his daughter, who touches herself a lot when she sleeps, has accessed NN3 with her hands and feet in her sleep,” the report said, summarizing the court document. “NN3 has since made a mistake and thought it was him. “

Regarding the charges of possession of child pornography, Sundén admitted to watching child pornography, but denied the files were his, claiming others had access to his computers. He admitted that he was the only one with access to his phone, but contended he did not believe the subject of the pornographic film stored there to be underage.

Finally, the report notes that Sundén, who changed his legal name to Johan Andersson, has separated from his wife, Sigrid.

“He and Sigrid have now separated due to this incident and to protect children so they can have friends at home,” the document states. “He has also changed his name to protect his children in case he is convicted; he does not want them to lose their friends. He has no sexual interest in children.”