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Monday, April 16, 2012

Anders Breivik Trial Begins

Anders Breivik brutally murdered 77 innocents in Norway last year and isn’t the least bit sorry, in fact he has no remorse whatsoever.  He wrote that being diagnosed as a psychotic paranoid schizophrenic by two court-appointed psychiatrists, Synne Sorheim and Torgeir Husby, was ‘the ultimate humiliation’.

A second mental evaluation was ordered and was more to his liking - psychiatrists Agnar Aspaas and colleague Terje Toerrissen found that the defendant was not psychotic at the time of the crime.   Both reports are only advisory and it will be up to the judges to determine his mental state and where he should be jailed.

His trial starts tomorrow in Oslo and it will be one of the most bizarre in recent history because Breivik wants his defence to prove he is sane and therefore criminally responsible. He thinks that being sent to a psychiatric ward would be “worse than death”. 

He desperately wants the world to know that his crusade against multiculturalism and the “Muslim invasion” of Europe is real and action must be taken to stop it. He longs to tell the world why he did it and is frustrated by not being allowed to speak.

Norway has the most progressive penal system in Europe and focuses on rehabilitation rather than punishment so Breivik’s living arrangements have been quite comfortable. 

He has a suite of three adjoining cells, one is a bedroom, the second a gym and the third has a computer without internet access.   After an early breakfast, he works out in the gym then reads the newspapers.  He can play a computer game, relax in front of a DVD or watch television.   In 2009 prisoners campaigned for, and were granted, access to legal pornography in their cells. He also has a room-service bell which he can ring to have cigarettes delivered to him. After lunch he is allowed time in the fresh air in an enclosed yard. He practises Japanese ‘Bushido’ meditation every day to stop himself from feeling anything, something he has done for many years.

He has had no visitors. His father divorced his mother when Breivik was a baby and hasn’t spoken to his son for ten years. Until shortly before the attacks, he lived in Oslo with his mother Wenche Behring who he describes as having “the intellectual capacity of a ten year old.” Since the massacre she has been treated for shock and says she never wants to see her son again.

The trial is expected to last ten weeks and he specifically asked for Geir Lippestad to represent him because he once defended a neo-Nazi murder suspect Ole Nicolai Kvisler. Lippestad’s first reaction was to refuse the request but changed his mind and said equal rights for all was ‘a vital brick in the wall of democracy.’