Swedish police officer recognises fugitive in sauna, arrests him while both naked

Three men in a sauna
Saunas are very popular in Sweden. Photo credit: Getty

In possibly the most Swedish arrest of all time, an off-duty cop arrested a wanted fugitive while both men were naked in a sauna.

The unnamed police officer visited a 'badstu' in Rinkeby, Stockholm on his day off. He'd just sat down to enjoy the health benefits of a steam session when he recognised one of his fellow sauna users - a violent drug dealer.

"He never showed up to serve his sentence, so was naturally on a wanted list," Christoffer Bohman, deputy chief of Rinkeby Police, told local media.

"This officer was off duty, and by coincidence - and somewhat comically - both men recognised each other in the sauna."

The criminal had been on the run since he was sentenced to prison for drug offences and aggravated assault against a public official. When the officer recognised the man, he calmly carried out a professional yet thoroughly naked arrest.

"This was about as stripped-back and bare-bones an arrest as it is possible to make, in several senses of the term," Bohman said.

Details of the logistics of the arrest have not been made public, although it's an impressive feat given the officer had no handcuffs or backup and both men were probably very slippery.

In a pun-filled compliment, Bohman praised the officer on Facebook, calling him a "top colleague who kept a cool head even when things were hotting up".

He told media the wanted man will now serve his time in prison.

Saunas originated in Finland and remain popular across Scandinavia for the health benefits of hot steam. The 'badstu' facilities are usually single-sex and wearing swimwear is often forbidden as it is considered unhygienic.