Breivik trial: Tears over autopsy details

2012-05-04 20:01

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Oslo - Muffled sobs filled an Oslo courtroom on Friday as the first autopsy reports were presented for the 69 people massacred on Utoya Island last July, but confessed killer Anders Behring Breivik displayed no sign of emotion.

On the 12th day of the right-wing extremist's trial, the Oslo district court heard a coroner's clinical explanation of how the first nine victims died before being given more intimate descriptions, illustrated with photographs, of the same people.

Of the 69 people who died on the small, heart-shaped island last 22 July, 67 were shot to death, while the remaining two died from a fall and drowning, Torleiv Ole Rognum of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health told the court.

Most were hit by two or three bullets, and up to eight bullets had been pulled from one body.

A full 56 of the victims had been shot in the head, Rognum said, revealing how Breivik had systematically executed his victims, most of whom were teens attending a summer camp on the island hosted by the ruling Labour Party.

The lawyers representing survivors and victims' family members were visibly fighting back tears as they described the people who had died; one was "the best dad in the world", another, a bubbly young girl, who "spread laughter and joy".

Stony-faced

Many family members of people who died that day were in the courtroom and many broke down in tears upon hearing the descriptions of their loved ones, while some embraced and others left the room.

Breivik himself however showed no emotion upon hearing details about his victims, as has been the case throughout his trial.

The 33-year-old confessed killer remained stony-faced and aloof as he looked through a folder in front of him with pictures of the dead as they were found on Utoya, and again as he watched the coroner show on a life-size doll how bullets penetrated each body.

The list of Breivik's victims on Utoya is so long that it is expected to take all of next week to go through all the post-mortem reports.

Before he went on his shooting rampage on Utoya, Breivik had first bombed the government building that houses the offices of Labour Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg, who was not harmed in the attack that killed eight people.

While Breivik, who has been charged with committing "acts of terror", has confessed to carrying out the twin attacks, he refuses to plead guilty, insisting they were "cruel but necessary" to stop the Labour Party's "multicultural experiment" and the "Muslim invasion" of Norway and Europe.

- SAPA
Read more on:    anders behring breivik  |  norway  |  norway attacks
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