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18 Jan, 2022 02:35

Court to decide if Norway’s deadliest killer should be released

Convicted terrorist Anders Breivik could be awarded an early release if the court grants his request for parole
Court to decide if Norway’s deadliest killer should be released

A parole hearing for Norwegian mass murderer Anders Breivik is set to take place this week, more than 10 years after he killed 77 people and injured hundreds more in Norway’s deadliest attack since World War II.

Breivik’s parole hearing will take place on Tuesday at Nedre Telemark District Court in Skien. Breivik – an avowed far-right extremist who has been photographed making Nazi salutes at previous court appearances – will be able to apply for another parole hearing next year if this year’s bid is unsuccessful.

Prosecutor Hulda Karlsdottir told Reuters that they would argue “it is necessary” for Breivik to be kept in continued confinement “to protect society.”

Breivik has only served roughly half of his 21-year sentence – the maximum a criminal can be given in Norway – though if he is found to still be a threat at the end of the sentence, Breivik could be kept behind bars indefinitely.

In August, when Breivik’s parole hearing was announced, Karlsdottir explained that the “central question for the court during the hearing will be whether there is an imminent danger” of Breivik committing more violent crimes.

Breivik was sentenced to 21 years in prison in August 2012 after he murdered 77 people in two domestic terrorist attacks on July 22 the year prior.

In one of the attacks, Breivik detonated a bomb outside the Oslo office of Jens Stoltenberg, who was prime minister at the time, killing eight people. Breivik then moved on to a Labour Party youth summer camp in Viken, where he shot and killed 69 more.

The attack inspired other domestic terrorists around the world, including Christchurch mosque shooter Brenton Tarrant, who killed 51 people at two New Zealand mosques in 2019.