A good year after the terrorist attack on two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, the accused 29-year-old Australian Brenton Tarrant surprisingly pleaded guilty. This was announced by the New Zealand police on Thursday.
Tarrant admitted on Thursday before the Christchurch court the 51 murders and 40 attempted murders, it said. Previously, the Australian racist had always declared that he was innocent on all charges.
On March 15, 2019, he killed 51 people and injured dozens of people in two mosques. He broadcast the attack live on the Internet using a helmet camera. Before the bloodbath, Tarrant posted a pamphlet with racist slogans. He is also accused of terrorism. He is currently in a prison in Auckland, over 1,000 kilometers north of Christchurch.
The appointment in front of the court on Thursday had been spontaneously scheduled. The defendant was switched on by video. According to media reports, the names of all 51 killed were read to him before being asked about his guilt. “Oh, ok, yes, guilty,” he said, according to local media reports.
Tarrant is scheduled to be remanded until May 1, 2020. However, according to the Dutch police, no verdict should be pronounced unless all the survivors of the tragedy who wanted to be able to attend the trial. This will not be possible for a long time due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Relief in many places
No reason was given for the assassin’s change of heart. The debt admission means that there will now be no trial to attack the two mosques in Christchurch. The process should have started in early June.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Thursday that admitting the debt will bring some relief to the survivors and bereaved. You are now spared “the agony of a process”. The authorities also feared that the perpetrator could use the process as a platform to further propagate his racist worldview.
(scl / sda)