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Norwegian court sentences mass killer Breivik to 21 years in prison

08-25-2012 14:01 BJT Special Report: Norway Shocked by Twin Attacks |

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Norwegian mass killer Anders Behring Breivik was sentenced to 21 years in prison at the Oslo District Court on Friday.

The court also found him to be sane, dismissing the prosecution's request for an insane verdict.

Norway's penal code does not have the death penalty or life in prison, and the maximum prison term for Breivik's charges is 21 years.

However, inmates who are considered a threat to society can be held indefinitely.

District Court Judge Wenche Elizabeth Arntzen first read out the conclusion of the verdict and she will use the rest of the day to justify that the defendant is mentally healthy enough to be convicted of terrorist acts.

It will take judges about six hours to read the 90-page verdict.

After being brought into the main courtroom, the confessed Breivik was smiling and chatting with his lawyers and people behind him before the verdict reading started at 10 o'clock local time (0800 GMT).

Breivik once again raised his right arm, making what is believed to be a rightist gesture, as he did when the trial started on April 16.

Many in the packed courtroom gave a sign of relief when Breivik was announced sane. Norwegian prosecutors had demanded that he should be ruled as insane.

But Breivik's defense lawyer Geir Lippestad, who met Breivik on Thursday for the last time before Friday's verdict, said that Breivik would accept prison terms but would appeal an insanity ruling.

Psychiatrist Kjersti Narud said that it was the right of judges to make the judgment over Breivik's mental state when he committed the criminal acts.

Breivik, a 33-year-old Norwegian on a mission to expel Muslims from Europe, set off a car bomb that killed eight people outside government headquarters in Oslo on July 22, 2011 and then killed 69 others in a shooting rampage on Utoeya island, where young members of the governing Labor Party had gathered for their annual summer camp.

Tore Sinding Bekkedal, who was on Utoeya island on that tragic day, said that Friday's verdict was what he had hoped for.

Breivik has a "political madness," but his case is not a psychiatric case, Bekkedal said.

"Now we can try to move on," said Bekkedal, who wished neither side of the case would appeal.


Editor:James |Source:

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