Anders Behring Breivik, the confessed killer of 77 people in Norway’s July 22 twin terror attacks, said he had planned to detonate three bombs before killing as many as possible in a shooting rampage across Oslo.
The 33-year-old had considered targets such as the Aftenposten newspaper, City Hall and the Royal Castle, he told the Oslo court today. If he had survived the bomb attacks, he planned to attack Blitz, a left-wing group, newspapers and political parties in Oslo to kill as many people as possible, he said in his third day of testimony.
The plan failed because it was “more difficult than I thought to build a bomb,” he said.
Breivik in July killed 69 people at a Labor Party youth camp on the island of Utoeya and detonated a car bomb by the prime minister’s office, taking eight lives. He has confessed to the murders, saying he acted out of necessity to protect Norway against multiculturalism and the spread of Islam.
One of the “primary motives” behind the attacks was to gain publicity for a manifesto he published the day of the attacks, he said. The compendium “is an attempt to make a foundation for the extreme right in Europe,” he said.
He has been indicted on two terror charges as well as murder and if found sane may be sentenced to 21 years in prison with the possibility of five-year extensions as long as he’s deemed a danger to society.
The Oslo native also said he had planned to decapitate former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, who was visiting Utoeya on July 22. She had departed before he arrived.
An initial psychiatric evaluation last year found Breivik was suffering from paranoid schizophrenia, meaning he would face compulsory treatment rather than prison. The decision was criticized by victims and caused the Oslo court to order a new assessment in January. A second report found him not to be clinically psychotic and therefore accountable for his actions. Neither evaluation is binding for the court.
Breivik today called the first psychiatric report “pure fiction,” as he seeks to convince the judges he’s sane in order to further his ideology. He either wants the death penalty or to be acquitted, he said yesterday.
He was questioned by prosecutors on the planning of the killings, which he said started in about 2006, a year that he was also living with his mother and playing World of Warcraft, an online fantasy game, for 16 hours a day.
“I deserved to take one year off to do whatever I wanted, especially with the so-called suicide action in mind,” he said. “I wanted to grant it as a gift of martyrdom.”
At the opening of the 10-week trial on April 16, Breivik refused to admit guilt and declined to accept the authority of the court even as he confessed to the murders. The trial is being broadcast to 17 court houses nationwide to allow about 2,000 aggrieved relatives and friends of the victims to follow the proceedings.