POSTED: 3:45 a.m. HST, Jun 21, 2012
OSLO, Norway >> Prosecutors today asked a court to send confessed mass killer Anders Behring Breivik to a mental institution instead of prison for his massacre of 77 people in a gun and shooting rampage.
If the court comes to the same conclusion when it issues its ruling, expected next month, it would mean that Breivik will avoid criminal responsibility for Norway’s worst peacetime massacre.
The attacks at Norway’s government headquarters and a youth summer camp would then not be considered acts of political terrorism, but the work of a blood-thirsty madman.
“We request that he is transferred to compulsory psychiatric care,” prosecutor Svein Holden told the court in closing arguments.
The defense is likely to refute the insanity finding on Friday, the last day of the 10-week trial. Breivik, who styles himself as an anti-Muslim militant, claims he is sane and that his attacks were motivated by his political views.
Just like when the trial stared in mid-April, the 33-year-old Norwegian flashed a clenched-fist salute with his right arm before he was led out of the court today.