Lawyer suggests Norway suspect is insane


Geir Lippestad, the defense lawyer for Anders Behring Breivik, speaks with the foreign media at the International Press Center in Oslo, on July 26, 2011.



The defense lawyer for Anders Behring Breivik says the case against his client, who admits to carrying out last Friday's twin terrorist attacks in Norway, indicates he is insane.

This comes as prosecutor Christian Hatlo told the Aftenposten newspaper that Norwegian police were considering charging Breivik with crimes against humanity.

Breivik currently faces charges of terrorism that carry a maximum sentence of 21 years, but if convicted of crimes against humanity, he could receive up to 30 years.

A police spokesman told Agence France Presse that although they had cited charges pertaining to terrorism laws, police had not excluded seeking other charges.

At a press conference on Tuesday, defense lawyer Geir Lippestad said he was not taking instructions from Breivik, but that someone was required to defend him. He said it was too early to say whether Breivik would plead insanity.

He also said that Breivik took drugs in order to remain "strong, efficient and awake”.

(More in-depth coverage from GlobalPost: Is Breivik part of a movement? and Norway's Christian terrorist leads to soul-searching)

Breivik has admitted to a shooting spree on an island youth Labor Party camp, and to a bombing in the capital Oslo, but has not pleaded guilty to terrorism charges.

The Associated Press reports that Lippestad is a member of the Labor Party, but does not know if Breivik is aware of this.

Police last night revised the death toll downwards from 93 to 76, but said they were still looking for those missing.

Meanwhile, after talks with Oslo's police chief, Norway's justice minister praised the work done by police, reported the BBC.

Police will formally release the names of the victims on Tuesday afternoon.

Processions were held in towns and cities across Norway on Monday night in remembrance of the victims.