Swedish police find black flags and beards equal good deeds

AP News
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Posted: Oct 12, 2015 1:26 PM

HELSINKI (AP) — Alerted by a passer-by that bearded men with a black flag were acting suspiciously at a castle ruins in southern Sweden, police found to their relief that it wasn't a group of Islamic State sympathizers but a meeting of hirsute do-gooders.

John Ekeblad, co-founder of the Swedish chapter of the Bearded Villains, says the incident Saturday ended with police acknowledging their mistake and even ignoring the brotherhood's illegal parking on the roadside by Brahehus Castle, outside the city of Jonkoping.

Ekeblad said Monday the incident was "hilarious," and that police drove off laughing. He explained the group promotes equality and does charity work in Sweden.

Bearded Villains, founded in 2014 in Los Angeles, calls itself "a brotherhood of elite bearded men from all over the world" on its website.