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Norwegian Mass Killer Breivik Declared Sane

  • RFE/RL

Anders Behring Breivik, who reportedly confessed to the rampage that killed 77 people, arrives at a court hearing in Oslo in February 2012.

Anders Behring Breivik, who reportedly confessed to the rampage that killed 77 people, arrives at a court hearing in Oslo in February 2012.

A new psychiatric examination has found that confessed mass killer Anders Behring Breivik is accountable for his actions.

The 33-year-old Norwegian has confessed to killing 77 people in a bomb attack and a shooting spree on July 22.

Breivik denies criminal guilt, saying the attacks were necessary as part of what he calls a civil war against Islam in Europe.

The findings contradicted an earlier examination that found Breivik psychotic and prompted prosecutors to say he should be committed to a mental institution instead of prison, if convicted.

The court will assess both psychiatric evaluations during the trial, which starts April 16 and is scheduled to last 10 weeks.

The new conclusion comes just days before Breivik is scheduled to go on trial on terrorism charges for the massacre and could prompt prosecutors to seek a prison sentence instead of compulsory commitment to psychiatric care.

Breivik's lawyer, Geir Lippestad, said his client was "pleased" with the conclusion of the new examination and will tell the court he "regrets that he didn't go further."

On July 22, Breivik first set off a car bomb outside government buildings in Oslo, killing eight people. He then traveled to the small island of Utoeya northwest of the capital where, dressed as a police officer, he shot and killed another 69 people.

Most of the victims on Utoeya were teenagers attending a summer camp hosted by the youth organization of the ruling Labor Party.

After the attacks, Breivik told investigators that he was part of a right-wing militant group seeking to overthrow European governments and deport Muslim immigrants from Europe.

Police, however, found no trace of his so-called Knights Templar organization and say he planned and carried out the attacks on his own.

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, and dpa
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