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Norway's top cop: Attacker a lone radical


The Associated Press

OSLO -- The man who admitted killing 76 people in a bombing and youth camp massacre last week is a sociopath who acted without accomplices or a network of like-minded right-wing extremists, and kept his plans to himself for more than a decade, Norway's top police official said yesterday.

Levels of right-wing violence across Europe have been generally low, and there are no clear signs of imminent danger from networks of extremists, security officials said. But they expressed concern that Anders Behring Breivik could inspire imitators among the continent's extremist, anti-immigrant fringe. Particularly worrying are similar loners who give no clues of their intentions to others before acting, officials said.

European Union counterterrorism officials held a special meeting with Norwegian representatives yesterday dedicated to preventing future extreme-right attacks, saying they would try to share information faster and better understand what triggers the rare radical to turn to violence.

"Clearly, one major risk is that somebody may actually try to mount a similar attack as a copycat attack or as a way of showing support," said Tim Jones, principal adviser to the EU's counterterrorism coordinator.

Police were on high alert across Europe: Finnish officers said they had arrested an 18-year-old man who ordered 22 pounds of fertilizer from Poland to build explosives. Police said the case appeared to have no connection to the massacre; national broadcaster YLE cited police as saying the man told them he wanted to make fireworks.

Breivik claims he carried out the July 22 attacks as part of a network of modern-day crusaders plotting a revolution against a multicultural Europe, and that there are other cells ready to strike.

But investigators have found no signs -- before or after the attacks -- of a larger conspiracy, Janne Kristiansen, the director of the Norwegian Police Security Service told The Associated Press.

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