The new six-part Netflix Swedish series Clark is based on the autobiography of Clark Olofsson.
Clark was a career criminal who lived more than half his life in correctional institutions in Sweden and became known as Sweden’s first celebrity gangster.
He has received sentences for attempted murder, assault, robbery and dealing narcotics.
Clark was present at the Norrmalmstorg robbery whose events resulted in the creation of the phrase “Stockholm syndrome” to describe them.
Who is Clark Olofsson?
Born on 1 February 1947 in Trollhättan, Sweden, his early years were troubled, with his father leaving when he was 11 and his mother being admitted to a psychiatric hospital.
He and his two siblings were placed in foster care. However, they returned to their mother when she recovered. Clark had shown a penchant for petty crime in his youth and would choose the path of criminality throughout his life.
It would be a cat-and-mouse existence between Clark and the police, and Clark would escape prison on more than one occasion.
In 1973 he was serving time in Norrköping Prison when bankrobber Jan-Erik Olsson took hostages at Kreditbanken at Norrmalmstorg, Stockholm.
He demanded that Clark should be brought to him. Clark was duly delivered to the bank and he spent the next six days with the hostages.
The event led to the coining of the phrase “Stockholm syndrome”.
Clark was eventually acquitted for involvement in the robbery as he argued he had worked to keep the hostages alive. He was returned to prison to serve the remainder of his original sentence.
However, he escaped from Norrköping prison, robbed a bank in Copenhagen and went on the run across Europe.
After a year as a fugitive, he was arrested and sentenced to eight years in prison.
Clark was in and out of prisons in Sweden and Belgium for a series of drug smuggling offences from the 1990s into 2010.
Despite his chaotic life, he was married to Marijke Demuynck from 1976 to1999.
He has six children, two daughters from before his marriage, three sons from his marriage with Marijke, and a son with his current fiancée.
He now lives in Belgium.
What is Stockholm syndrome?
It is a condition in which hostages develop a psychological bond with their captors during their captivity.
In general terms, it results from power imbalances and can apple to hostage-taking, kidnapping and abusive relationships.
The term was first used by the media in 1973 following the Norrmalmstorg robbery when four hostages were taken during a bank robbery in Stockholm, Sweden.
After they were released, the hostages defended their captors and refused to testify in court against them.
How can I watch Clark?
The series, which the programme notes say is based on Clark’s “truth and lies”, stars Bill Skarsgård, Vilhelm Blomgren and Hanna Björn.
It is on Netflix but you will need a subscription to watch it.