Swedish police have arrested a 70-year-old woman suspected of confining her adult son in a Stockholm flat for up to three decades.
According to the BBC, the son, now aged about 40, was found living in squalor with injuries that required surgery.
The son is believed to have been discovered by his sister on Nov. 29 after his mother was taken to the hospital for an illness.
The elderly woman has denied falsely imprisoning and causing grievous bodily harm to her son.
She is expected to remain in police custody while investigations are underway.
BBC reported that if found guilty, she could face up to 10 years in jail.
Found toothless in decaying home
The man's sister told the media she had discovered her brother when she visited the flat with her partner after hearing her mother was in the hospital.
She had not seen her brother since she'd moved out of the flat as a teenager.
Her brother, she said, had been removed from school when he was aged 11 or 12.
When she visited the flat, the sister found the front door unlocked and the home in darkness.
According to the BBC, the flat reeked of urine, decay, dirt and dust.
Reuters reported the man as being found lying on a blanket on the floor, toothless, unable to speak, and covered in sores and injuries.
He reportedly recognised his sister, despite not having seen her for decades.
A chance to get her dead child back
Once the man was taken to hospital, doctors alerted the police who subsequently detained his mother.
Stockholm prosecutor Emma Olsson was quoted by Reuters as saying that he may have been held for nearly 30 years.
Reuters reported that no immediate explanation was provided for why the son had been held.
However, BBC — citing Swedish media — quoted the sister as saying the mother had felt bad about losing an earlier child at a young age.
She allegedly saw her next son as a chance to have her dead child back, even giving him the same name.
Top image from Denny Mullër via Unsplash
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