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Norway Shooter Demands Medal Of Honor And His Release: Last Hearing Before Trial Starts
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Norway Shooter Demands Medal Of Honor And His Release: Last Hearing Before Trial Starts

Anders Behring Breivik walked into court in Norway, smiling and allowing his photograph to be taken. He has admitted that he planned and carried out a bombing as well as a mass shooting that claimed seventy seven lives in Oslo and on Utoya Island, but has said that the court has no authority over him and that he is not criminally culpable for the one day siege. During his Monday appearance in the Oslo district court, Breivik also demanded that he be given Norway's Medal of Honor for his "service" to the nation and that he be released. This was his last appearance before the court until his trial starts sometimes in April.

In late July, Breivik set off a bomb outside of a government building in the capital city of Oslo then arrived on Utoya Island where he opened fire on the teenagers attending a Labor Party youth camp there. He accomplished the massacre using a rifle and a handgun in addition to the explosives that he used for his bomb.

Originally claiming to be the commander of the Knights Templar, Breivik said that the mission was to take care of the "traitors" to Norway. He felt that Muslim immigration was leading to an imminent colonization of the country. The Knights Templar, according to Breivik, were a militant organization with plans to overthrow a number of the current European governments. Police found no trace of this alleged network of militants and are charging Breivik with terror crimes as a single person. If convicted, he could face up to twenty one years in a Norwegian prison. However, if a court ordered evaluation finds him severely mentally ill, he could be remanded for psychiatric care instead. An initial evaluation found him to be criminally insane. A second evaluation was cancelled after Breivik refused to cooperate with doctors.

During his first court appearance, Breivik refused to have his photo taken. On Monday, he allowed photos, even smirking before speaking on his own behalf at the hearing. Before the proceeding started, he extended his arms in a strange greeting later explained to be an extremist greeting by his attorney, Geir Lippestad.

Lippestad said that Breivik's in court behavior is likely a preview of what will happen when the trial starts in April. It will not focus purely on the crimes, because there has been no dispute of what happened, the how or the why. Instead, the court will be forced to focus on his personality, to determine Breivik's level of sanity and whether he should be held in prison or hospitalized.


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