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Norway bow-and-arrow, knife attack perpetrator sentenced to compulsory mental care

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By Euronews  with AP, AFP
The cordoned-off area of the scene involved in the bow and arrow attack, in Kongsberg.
The cordoned-off area of the scene involved in the bow and arrow attack, in Kongsberg.   -   Copyright  Terje Bendiksby/Terje Pedersen/NTB via AP

A Danish man who killed five people and injured four others with knives and a bow and arrow in Norway in October last year has been convicted and found guilty of murder and attempted murder.

The Buskerud District Court on Friday sentenced the 38-year-old Espen Andersen Bråthen to compulsory mental health care.

Three forensic psychiatric experts who assessed Andersen Bråthen had concluded that he had suffered chronic paranoid schizophrenia since 2007 and was mentally ill at the time of the attack.

"The court, therefore, finds that the defendant cannot be held criminally responsible for any of the charges," the court said.

Andersen Bråthen was carrying 62 arrows and four knives at the time of the attack in Kongsberg on October 13 last year.

He was arrested more than half an hour after he started firing arrows inside a grocery store and attacking strangers inside their homes.

The Danish man had then attacked people with knives after his bow broke, the court heard, killing four women and one man, aged between 52 and 78.

The three-judge court said the defendant had explained that "he had decided to kill people in order to achieve rebirth".

"He said he thought he was going to go blind (and) therefore believed that it was urgent to kill.”

Andersen Bråthen had pleaded guilty to five counts of murder and 11 counts of attempted murder at the start of his trial. He was also ordered to pay compensation to the victims.