State prosecutor advocates court psychiatrist system review / News / The Foreigner

State prosecutor advocates court psychiatrist system review. UPDATED: Tor-Aksel Busch believes procedural changes are necessary following yesterday’s new diagnosis of Anders Behring Breivik. “I think we need a review of our system concerning the requirements for being declared criminally sane. I have called for a review of the rules before, and this question has not become less relevant today,” he told Aftenposten, Tuesday. He claims this is also necessary in light of the fact that the aggrieved are also naturally concerned about this, citing the question of sanity will be vital following calls by parliament’s 22 July committee for the government to study present measures.

breivikpsychiatricassessment, breiviktrialoslo



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State prosecutor advocates court psychiatrist system review

Published on Wednesday, 11th April, 2012 at 16:10 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 11th April 2012 at 16:39.

UPDATED: Tor-Aksel Busch believes procedural changes are necessary following yesterday’s new diagnosis of Anders Behring Breivik.

Tor-Aksel Busch (centre) illus. ph.
Tor-Aksel Busch (centre) illus. ph.
Photo: Norges Bank/Flickr


“I think we need a review of our system concerning the requirements for being declared criminally sane. I have called for a review of the rules before, and this question has not become less relevant today,” he told Aftenposten, Tuesday.

He claims this is also necessary in light of the fact that the aggrieved are also naturally concerned about this, citing the question of sanity will be vital following calls by parliament’s 22 July committee for the government to study present measures.

“This review also includes the safety regimes connected to the treatment of those who are declared insane,” he continued.

Psychiatrist Pål Abrahamsen wants the Penal Code’s paragraph 44, which states, “those who were psychotic or unconscious at the time of acting are non-punishable” removed.

“The person would then be convicted for what he/she did. It’s only when deciding the sentence that one would have to take account of whether it is a peculiarity of the person. Perhaps psychiatry should be toned-down a little in the court system. This will lead to more equality under the law by giving people punishment based on what they have done, then deciding how the sentence should be carried out.”

Former Conservative Prime Minister Kåre Willoch, who criticised officials’ terror preparedness during Breivik’s attacks, suggests going a stage further.

“As far as I know, court-appointed psychiatrists have no formal power. Despite this, they have gained a disproportionate influence in quite a few cases. I believe one should consider reviewing whether to use medical experts at all.”

Meanwhile, Rogaland-based forensic psychiatrists Stavanger Aftenblad spoke with are concerned Terje Tørrisen and Agnar Aspaas’ conclusions will weaken trust in their field as it was completely opposite to the first.

“This is a farce”, said Stavanger University Hospital (SUS) professor of psychiatry Tor K. Larsen.”

The court has said the decision to appoint new experts is not to discredit the one by Torgeir Husby and Synne Sørheim, but meant as a second opinion.

Professor Larsen underlines the report is still subject to final approval by the forensic commission. Without concurring with any of the four, he nevertheless declared, “I think there is reason to question the competence of the experts here.”

“One gets the impression that it’s coincidences that determine the assessment, and it’s of course serious in such a large and important issue such as this one.”

“Meanwhile, I highly disagree that our discipline is as uncertain as it seems here. The experts here have had ample time. They could check things carefully and watch the “replay” several times, to use a football expression. Therefore, it’s incomprehensible that one can draw very different conclusions. Completely different reports are untenable as things stand for now, at least.”




Published on Wednesday, 11th April, 2012 at 16:10 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 11th April 2012 at 16:39.

This post has the following tags: breivikpsychiatricassessment, breiviktrialoslo.





  
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