Terror defendant can stand trial

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Court-appointed psychiatrists have determined that the young ultra-right-wing Norwegian who murdered his adopted step-sister and then opened fire in a mosque is capable of standing trial. Police have also determined that the 23-year-old Philip Manshaus acted alone.

After 11 conversations with Philip Manshaus, the psychiatrists unanimously agreed that he suffered no form of psychosis when he carried out what amounted to racist and anti-Islamic attacks in mid-August. First he murdered his adopted step-sister because she was born in China and thus an immigrant to Norway, before he began shooting inside a mosque in suburban Bærum. No one was killed inside the mosque before Manshaus was overmanned by two elderly men.

Prosecutors are now likely to seek Norway’s maximum punishment of 21 years in prison with forvaring, a form of custody aimed at protecting the public that could keep Manshaus confined for life. Attorneys representing the dead girl’s mother and the mosque told state broadcaster NRK that they were relieved and satisfied with the psychiatrists’ conclusion, with mosque attorney John Christian Elden saying that “wickedness and not sickness was behind the attacks,” to which Manshaus has confessed.

The Oslo County Court extended Manshaus’ custody until his trial begins sometime during the first half of next year.

newsinenglish.no staff