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People with psychotic disorders are at greater risk of conviction for arson

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Are psychotic disorders associated with arson?


Cases were all individuals convicted of arson in Sweden between 1988 and 2000 (n=1689; 79% male); controls were a random selection of the population (n=40 560). Equal proportions of control individuals were selected to ‘enter’ the study each year. People convicted of arson were not included as controls. All included individuals were aged above 15 years (the age of criminal responsibility in Sweden).


General population, Sweden; 1988–2000.

Prognostic factors

Psychosis including schizophrenia, bipolar affective disorder and other psychoses (including drug-induced psychoses). In Sweden, all patients were given one or more clinical diagnoses on discharge according to the International Classifications of Diseases, Ninth Revision (up to 1996) and International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision (from 1997). These were obtained from the Hospital Discharge Register. For the purposes of the study, diagnoses were based on the principal discharge diagnosis of the first admission during the study period.


A conviction for arson. In Sweden, individuals are convicted …

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  • Source of funding Not reported.


  • Competing interests None.

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