Breivik disputes ‘insane’ diagnosis: lawyer

The confessed killer behind the July massacre in Norway disputes an expert conclusion that he is criminally insane, a newspaper reported on Saturday, quoting one of his lawyers.

"We have examined a good part of the report that details the conversations he had with the psychologists," Odd Ivar Grøn told the daily Verdens Gang.

Anders Behring Breivik, 32, "reacted by saying that it contained factual errors (and) lies and that his statements were taken out of context," Grøn was quoted as saying.

Prosecutors last Tuesday declared the right-wing extremist criminally insane when he killed 77 people on July 22nd after two psychiatrists who examined him concluded that he suffered from paranoid schizophrenia.

The lawyer said he spent six hours discussing the 243-page report with Behring Breivik.

"He thinks they considered some of his statements bizarre that he didn't think were bizarre. And he does not share their judgement that he is mentally ill," Grøn said.

"He is concerned over the fact that these experts do not have enough knowledge of political ideologies," Grøn told the paper.

By removing Behring Breivik's criminal responsibility, the diagnosis will probably see him sentenced to receive psychiatric care in a closed institution — possibly for the rest of his life — instead of prison, and has divided opinion in Norway.

The report by psychiatrists Synne Serheim and Torgeir Husby has still to be reviewed by a panel of experts to ensure that it conforms with professional standards.

Behring Breivik's trial is set to open April 16th and is expected to last around 10 weeks.

In the attacks, Behring Breivik first set off a car bomb outside government buildings in Oslo, killing eight people, before going on a shooting rampage on the nearby island of Utøya.

For nearly an hour and a half, he methodically gunned down another 69 people, most of them teenagers attending a summer camp of the ruling Labour Party youth organisation.

Behring Breivik, an Islamaphobe, accused the party of promoting the multicultural society he despises.

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Kongsberg attacker killed victims with ‘sharp object’

Norwegian police said Monday that the five victims of last week's attack were killed by a "sharp object" used by the suspect, not a bow and arrows.

The Kongsberg attacker is said to have killed five people with sharp objects. Pictured is police tape from a separate incident.
The Kongsberg attacker is said to have killed five people with sharp objects. Pictured is police tape from a separate incident. Photo by Søren Storm Hansen on Flickr.

“At some point he discarded or lost his bow and arrows,” police inspector Per Thomas Omholt told reporters.

He said that during the attack on Wednesday the suspect killed “five people with a sharp object both in private addresses and in public spaces”.

Police, who had previously said that the suspect Espen Andersen Brathen was armed with a bow and arrows and two other weapons, did not specify the nature of the sharp weapons, adding that they were still interviewing witnesses.

“Everything points to the victims being selected at random,” Omholt said.

According to the police, more than 10 people were also shot at with arrows at the start of the attack, but none were killed with this weapon.

READ MORE: Norway police query Kongsberg attacker’s Muslim faith

During police questioning, Brathen has confessed to the killings and to wounding three others.

The 37-year-old Danish citizen has announced publicly that he is a convert to Islam and initially police reported that there had been fears of radicalisation.

He is however being kept in a medical facility pending a psychiatric evaluation, which is necessary to determine whether Brathen can be held legally responsible for his actions.

“As far as motive is concerned, illness remains the main hypothesis. And as far as conversion to Islam is concerned, this hypothesis is weakened,” Omholt added.

On Saturday, police announced the identities of the five victims, four women and one man: Andrea Meyer, 52, Hanne Merethe Englund, 56, Liv Berit Borge, 75, Gunnar Erling Sauve, 75 and Gun Marith Madsen, 78.