Accused New Zealand mosque shooter shocks with switch to guilty plea
|reuters.com 25 Mar 2020 at 23:52|
WELLINGTON (Reuters) - An Australian man accused of killing 51 Muslim worshippers in New Zealand’s worst mass shooting changed his plea to guilty in a surprise move on Thursday.
FILE PHOTO: Brenton Tarrant, charged for murder in relation to the mosque attacks, is seen in the dock during his appearance in the Christchurch District Court, New Zealand March 16, 2019. Mark Mitchell/New Zealand Herald/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo
Brenton Tarrant, who appeared by video link, admitted to 51 charges of murder, 40 charges of attempted murder and one charge of committing a terrorist act in a hastily called Christchurch High Court hearing.
“He has been convicted of each and every one of those charges,” presiding judge Justice Cameron Mander said in minutes of the hearing released by the court.
“The entry of guilty pleas represents a very significant step towards bringing finality to this criminal proceeding.”