Anders Behring Breivik, the 32-year-old man who has confessed to killing at least 94 people, including many young people, in two coordinated attacks in Norway on Friday — calling the actions “atrocious but necessary,” according to his racist, anti-Islam, Christian fundamentalist ideology — has now begun to say that he didn’t act alone after all. According to the New York Times, Breivik says two extremist cells collaborated with him. He’s being held in complete isolation to prevent him from interfering with police investigations into possible accomplices.
Breivik appeared at a closed arraignment this morning; he’d wished to use the hearing as a platform to air his anti-Muslim views to the public and also to appear in some kind of uniform. Both requests were denied.
“Based on information in the case the court finds that today’s detention hearing should be held behind closed doors,” Judge Kim Heger said in a statement. “It is clear that there is concrete information that a public hearing with the suspect present could quickly lead to an extraordinary and very difficult situation in terms of the investigation and security.”
Breivik has been charged with “acts of terrorism,” including an attempt to “disturb or destroy the functions of society, such as the government” and to spread “serious fear” among the population. Prosecutors have asked that he be held for 8 weeks.
Breivik has acknowledged the acts but pleaded not guilty because he believed them necessary to “save Norway.”
Investigators have searched the house of Breivik’s father, Jens, in southern France, though it’s unclear what they were searching for or might have discovered. Jens has not been in touch with his son for many years, apparently.
Norway Suspect Hints That He Did Not Act Alone [NYT]
Norwegian Gunman’s Hearing Closed [Time]
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on July 25, 2011