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Who do Swedish Cops Think They Are?

If you think laws regarding steroids in the U.S. are strict, take a look at Nordic Europe’s laws. Of all the countries in the European Union, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland have the strictest laws regulating the circulation of unauthorized dealing of anabolic steroids, testosterone, and growth hormone. Though the smuggling of performance-enhancing drugs is illegal in most countries, the priority of black market trading of anabolic substances is low among their customs authorities and police forces with the exception of these “oddball” countries. While the rest of Europe is pretty laid-back when it comes to personal use of anabolic androgenic steroids (AAS), these countries prohibit such use and regularly seize illegally imported shipments.

In the United States, there are many ways to get caught using steroids, however the chances of being targeted by the government for importing and using small quantities are very slim. Whether a supply of steroids ordered online was delivered by domestic or international sources does not matter—there is always a chance the package will draw the attention of a U.S. postal inspector if it is leaking or raising red flags by the way it is labeled or packed.

If for any reason the package is seized and tested, many times the intended recipient of the package receives a letter in the mail stating that the package contains a controlled substance (in the U.S. anabolic steroids are among the most common illicitly abused schedule III controlled substances). The letter gives the person a chance to claim that he or she has a legal right to the contents inside and a window of time is given so he or she can prove it. If the package is never claimed, it becomes “lost.”

Another possible way to get caught is through a controlled delivery. This means that the package is flagged and seized without a letter. The package arrives in the hands of an undercover cop posing as your local mailman. Once the package is accepted and signed for, the recipient takes on a legal burden.
In Sweden, law enforcement sometimes follows its own set of rules and hunches when policemen engage in singling out random citizens they believe to be “doping” or “juicing” just because they look too big. Swedish police officers have actually approached “buff” guys simply because they appeared unnaturally ripped and have forced them to follow them to the police station to undergo urine tests. So-called “muscle profiling” sounds absurd, but it is a completely legal practice there. In fact, some U.S. bodybuilders touring in Europe have unfortunately experienced it for themselves.

IFBB bodybuilder Toney Freeman was victimized during the 2010 Göteborg Fitness Festival while signing DVDs for fans. The Sundvall Police Chief, Henrik Blusi, organized a raid of the supplement store in which the professional bodybuilders were to sign autographs prior to their arrival. The media-hungry police chief first informed the media of his intention to perform this raid. He then instructed ten police officers to escort Freeman from the supplement store on suspicion of anabolic steroid use based solely on the bodybuilder’s “extraordinary muscularity” and status as a pro-bodybuilder. Freeman was forced to submit a urine sample without permission to first contact an attorney, the United States Embassy, or even a family member to inform them of the event. He was told that because he was “extraordinarily muscular” it was likely he had used steroids and proceeded to interrogate him before making him urinate in a plastic cup for testing.
After receiving such unnecessary harassment from the Swedish police force, Freeman canceled his tour early and flew back to the United States. Many bodybuilders due to stop in Sundsvall, Sweden also terminated their plans to make appearances. As for Henri Blusi, he proudly used the media to carry out his anti-bodybuilder/doping agenda when he shared his opinion on national television and stated that it was “immoral for bodybuilders to be used in advertising in Sweden” and that “bodybuilders are not welcome in Sundsvall.”