A Fox New guest on Thursday’s O’Reilly Factor was incorrectly identified as a “Swedish Defense and National Security Adviser,” a moniker he said the network falsely assigned him, the New York Times reports.
Nils Bildt appeared last week in a segment on violent immigrant crime in the Scandinavian country, providing testimony that would appear to bolster Donald Trump’s claim that something nefarious is “happening … in Sweden.”
During the segment, Bildt argued there is a “problem with socially deviant activity” that is “not being openly and honestly discussed.”
“There is a problem with crime. There is a problem with areas or hot spots of crime,” he argued.
The guest’s appearance prompted a barrage of Swedish officials to publicly announce they are unaware of who Bildt is. Mikael Abramsson, a spokesman for Sweden’s military and foreign ministry, told the Times, “We don’t know this guy.” And the head of terrorism research at the Swedish Defense University in Stockholm, Magnus Ranstorp, said there’s no such thing as a “Swedish Defense and National Security Adviser.”
Bildt, who was convicted in 2014 of assaulting a Virginian police officer, told the Times he never purported to be a Swedish official.
“I have never claimed to be a representative of, nor for, the Swedish Government—or any institution thereof,” he told the Times. “I always stated that I was an independent adviser.”
“Fox News was responsible for the title used—I think it was an unfortunate choice of words, but it is something they will need to answer for,” he added.
In a statement, Fox News denied they gave Bildt the title, and said O’Reilly will address the issue on Monday night’s show.