Norway mass killer 'not psychotic'

Experts at prison contradict a court-appointed mental evaluation that declared Anders Behring Breivik legally insane.

    Ila prison has not put Breivik on medication and does not see any need to move him to another facility [Reuters]

    Experts monitoring Anders Behring Breivik, the Norwegian mass killer, believe he is not psychotic, contradicting court-appointed psychiatrists.

    The latest observation of four psychiatrists at Ila prison, where Breivik is being held, was conveyed to the Oslo district court on Wednesday by Svein Holden, a public prosecutor.

    Svein Holden told the court in a letter that the prison has not put Breivik on medication and does not see any need to move him to another facility.

    The earlier finding has been fiercely debated by mental health experts and several lawyers representing the victims of the massacre that rocked Norway wanted the court to order a second evaluation.

    The November 29 finding said that Breivik was insane during his July 22 rampage that killed 77 people.

    In that report, the psychiatrists, who spent 36 hours talking to Breivik, described him as a man living in a "delusional universe" -a paranoid schizophrenic who had lost touch with reality.

    Holden told the court that despite the new information he would not seek another evaluation.

    He said that Breivik was recently given access to media in prison and could try to manipulate new experts in ways that would be favourable to him.

    Prosecutors say they would rather let experts testify at the upcoming trial.

    The deadline for parties to file their demands is Friday and the court will decide some time next week whether a new evaluation should be made, Geir Engebretsen, a court spokesman said.

    Breivik's trial is set to begin on April 16. If declared mentally fit and convicted of terrorism, he would face up to 21 years in prison or an alternative custody arrangement that could keep him behind bars indefinitely.

    If the courts declare him insane, he would be given three-year terms of psychiatric care that can be extended for as long as necessary.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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