Brenton Tarrant, the white supremacist terrorist who shot 51 people and injured 40 others in an attack on two mosques in New Zealand, was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole.
The verdict, the harshest sentence ever imposed by a New Zealand court, guarantees the 29-year-old Australian will die behind bars.
Judge Cameron Mander, who sentenced Tarrant at the Christchurch High Court where the attacks took place, condemned him as "inhuman" and said his actions were "brutal and persistent".
He added, "Your crimes are so evil that even if you are incarcerated until your death, the demands of punishment and denunciation are not exhausted."
The verdict came at the end of three harrowing days of testimony from 91 victims of Tarrant and their families, almost all of whom had urged the judge to see that he would never see the free world again.
When the news of the verdict became known, it sparked festivities outside of the court where people cheered, hugged and waved banners proclaiming "We are one".
Hina Amir, who survived the shooting at Al Noor Mosque in which 44 of the victims died, said bluntly, "He got what he deserved."
Brenton Tarrant, the Christchurch mosque terrorist, was sentenced to life in prison without parole
A survivor of the mosque shooting raises his crutches in the air and celebrates after leaving the courtroom where Tarrant was sentenced to life imprisonment without parole
Mohamed Jama, President of the Muslim Association of Canterbury, hugs with members of the community in the Christchurch High Court after Tarrant's conviction
Members of the public wave banners proclaiming "We Are One" await news that Tarrant has been sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison in New Zealand
Gamal Fouda, Imam of Al Noor Mosque, told reporters in court: “Today the trial for this heinous crime is over. No punishment will bring our loved ones back.
“We respect our judicial system and the New Zealand Muslim community, including non-Muslims. We worked together against hatred and set up our own model for the world.
“Extremists are all the same. Whether they use religion, nationalism, or any other ideology. All extremists represent hatred, but we are here today, we represent love, compassion. Muslim and non-Muslim. From belief and without belief.
"There we are New Zealanders, we are very proud that we are Muslims in New Zealand and that we will continue to serve this country."
At this week's sentencing, Tarrant sat unmoved for three days as a procession of his victims made powerful and emotionally charged statements about their loss.
On Thursday, his eyes were on Crown lawyers advocating a life sentence without parole and Judge Cameron Mander, who agreed to lock him up and throw away the key.
"It is difficult to look beyond the wickedness of any murder … but you are not only a murderer, you are a terrorist," said Justice Mander.
“Your actions were inhuman. You deliberately killed a three-year-old child while holding onto his father's leg. «
As the victims sobbed in the public gallery, Justice Mander took the time to orally appraise each murdered and wounded person in his judgment.
One widow described herself as "alive but not alive".
"Accountability, condemnation, deterrence and community protection must be at the heart of the court," said Justice Mander.
"No matter how horrific the crime, the rehabilitation potential always has to take a judicial break … but I remain unmoved."
The survivors stood hand in hand and smiled in front of the court on Thursday afternoon after the verdict was passed.
Survivors arrive to sentence Brenton Tarrant. The shooter was convicted in the High Court in Christchurch, New Zealand, on August 27, after attacking two mosques last year, on 51 murder cases, 40 attempted murders and a terrorism charge
Al Noor Mosque survivors, Mustafa Boztas, Wasseim Alsati and Temel Atacocugu (L-R), celebrate as they leave Christchurch Supreme Court following the conviction of Brenton Harrison Tarrant
The attacks against people praying in the Al Noor and Linwood mosques shocked New Zealand and resulted in new laws banning the deadliest types of semi-automatic weapons.
They also led to global changes to social media logs after the shooter broadcast his attack live on Facebook.
Tarrant was sentenced to life without parole in each of the 51 murders, 12 years in prison to serve at the same time in each of the 40 attempted murders, and another life sentence for terrorism.
New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke shortly after the conviction and praised the strength of the Muslim community.
"You relived the horrific events of March 15th to record what happened that day … I hope you felt the arms of New Zealand around you."
She continued that there would be no need to think about Tarrant or remember him beyond him.
"He deserves complete silence for a lifetime."
There are increasing calls for the murderer to be deported to Australia to pass his time.
However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had not received a request for the terrorist to serve his life sentence in Australia.
Survivors celebrate with supporters outside the High Court in Christchurch, New Zealand after the shooter was sentenced to life behind bars
Victims and relatives embrace as they wait to appear before the Christchurch Supreme Court on the final day of the trial for Australian Brenton Harrison Tarrant in Christchurch, New Zealand
A New Zealand law denied the Australian the ability to ever seek or gain his freedom after killing 51 people last year (survivors shown outside the court).
Sazada Akhter is seen testifying about the victim's implications in convicting mosque terrorist Brenton Tarrant
"It is common practice for criminals convicted of these crimes to serve their sentences in this jurisdiction and that is my understanding of the arrangements," said Morrison.
"Australia wasn't asked that it should be otherwise."
The Prime Minister paid tribute to the survivors of the New Zealand shootings, saying he and his wife, Jenny Morrison, met with a group who displayed incredible grace.
IMPORTANT POINTS FROM THE STATUTE:
-The Crown pushed for life without parole for "clearly New Zealand's worst murderer".
-Tarrant wasn't against being imprisoned for life.
-He claimed in a preliminary report that he was not racist or xenophobic.
-He said his political and social views were not real at the time and said he felt ostracized and wanted to harm society.
-But he accepted that it was without a doubt a terrorist attack.
– The Crown said it was clearly ideologically motivated, saying Tarrant was a dangerous narcissist who justified life without parole.
Prosecutor Mark Zarifeh based his argument on Australia's worst mass shooting, the 1996 Port Arthur massacre in Tasmania.
"The level of insult in this case is unparalleled in New Zealand criminal history," he began.
Mr Zarifeh said Tarrant had "shown calculated and militaristic determination in carrying out his plan", "expressed disappointment in not killing more people" with "calculated sadism and depravity".
"Many of those who were shot were on their knees in prayer with their backs to the perpetrator," he said.
"Life without parole is the only correct option for conviction."
As announced on Wednesday, Tarrant did not speak at his own conviction, despite choosing to represent himself.
During the four-day hearing, he uttered just a few words and said, "No thanks" when Justice Mander gave him one last opportunity to speak in front of the crowded courtroom.
His lawyer, Philip Hall, said Tarrant had not spoken out against the life sentence without parole.
New Zealand's worst mass shooter was a passive presence throughout the sentencing.
He was surrounded by four security guards at all times and wore a gray fleece tracksuit. He was attentive but gentle in the dock.
In the absence of his own disclosure, Justice Mander appointed an independent amicus curiae, Kerry Cook, to give integrity to the conviction.
On the basis of reports of private convictions that Tarrant had changed some of his views, Mr Cook argued that an unparalleled sentence violated the universality of human rights.
"Insult is not an inherent trait … there is hope, albeit weak, of rehabilitation," he said.
"Rehabilitation is constitutionally required in every community that focuses on human dignity."
According to the psychologist, Tarrant saw himself "proud" as a white European with an air of superiority and grandiosity.
The March 2019 attacks against people praying in the Al Noor and Linwood mosques shocked New Zealand and resulted in new laws banning the deadliest types of semi-automatic weapons (Al Noor Mosque pictured).
The psychologist said at the time of the attack that Tarrant was in a "poisoned state of mind".
He said he felt "ostracized from society" and "wanted to harm society as an act of revenge".
Tarrant told the psychologist that he was not thinking right at the time and "acted according to delusions".
Justice Mander said Tarrant had "no apparent mental orders or psychiatric conditions" and that there were no cognitive disorders.
"There was no evidence of a personality disorder – but his racist beliefs" developed and reinforced "as he got older.
But Justice Mander dismissed these reports as "unconfirmed, selfish and a relatively recent phenomenon".
Tarrant grew up in the northern town of Grafton, New South Wales and had a low-key upbringing and no previous beliefs.
He moved to New Zealand in 2017 before settling in the South Island city of Dunedin, where he remained isolated from the community.
Justice Mander said Tarrant was "without empathy" for his victims.
He said the Sagittarius remained completely self-centered and "aloof".
Survivors celebrate with supporters outside the High Court in Christchurch, New Zealand, Thursday, August 27, 2020
Ahad Nabi is seen during the trial for the Christchurch Mosque's gunner, Brenton Tarrant, on August 26th
My name is Sara Qasem. Daughter of a hero. Daughter of a shining, shimmering man … daughter of a martyr. By Abdelfattah Qasem. Do you remember this name, "said Sara Qasem firmly (picture)
This week Tarrant showed admirable human dignity to many victims.
For three days they stood meters away from the terrorist in the high court, baring their souls, crying for lost loved ones and experiencing the trauma of being present in their houses of worship during the attacks.
Tears flowed as the victims spoke of their agony after the shooting. Many said they still had trouble sleeping.
Perhaps the most baffling testimony came from Ahad Nabi, who lost his 71-year-old father Haj in the attack and described Tarrant as a "coward", "maggot" and "society's rubbish".
Ahad, dressed in a New Zealand Warriors rugby jersey, raised both middle fingers to Tarrant and tensed his muscles as he branded the killer "weak".
He added, “Your father was a garbage man and you became the garbage of society. He's ashamed of your identity. They deserve to be buried in a landfill. This world was made with color, a farmer like you will never change humanity.
“You hurt my father, but you never took him away from me. By that I mean that you physically hurt him, but you gave my father a martyr gift and he returned to Allah. & # 39;
Mosque shooting survivor Wassiem Daragmih thanks supporters who left Christchurch High Court after the Australian Brenton Harrison Tarrant hearing in Christchurch
Mosque shootout survivor Mustafa Boztas waves as he leaves the Christchurch Supreme Court after the hearing of Australian Brenton Harrison Tarrant
He described Tarrant as a coward after "shooting defenseless people who did not know what was going on until it was too late".
“Your actions were of a wicked character. There is nothing heroic about your actions, ”said Nabi.
Mr Nabi said he did not forgive Tarrant until he made a special request from the judge.
Another victim, Sara Qasem, was not originally listed in the court plans but rose to speak on behalf of her father Abdelfattah, who was murdered in the Al Noor mosque.
My name is Sara Qasem. Daughter of a hero. Daughter of a shining, shimmering man … daughter of a martyr. By Abdelfattah Qasem. Remember that name, ”she said firmly.
& # 39; My father never left. He could have left, but stayed behind to help his brothers. Put others in front of you. & # 39;
Ms. Qasem drew tears from every corner of the courtroom as she mourned her lost father.
"I never really knew what a broken heart meant until then," she said.
A mosque shooting survivor reacts as he leaves the Christchurch Supreme Court following the Christchurch Supreme Court hearing in Christchurch for Australian Brenton Harrison Tarrant
A student delivers a message of tribute as he stands before the High Court to assist relatives of those killed
“I want to do more road trips with him.
“Smell his home-style cooking. Its Cologne. & # 39;
She cried, calmed down and eyed Tarrant and said, "These tears are not for you."
"To hear his deep belly laugh," she continued.
“I want to hear him tell me more about the olive trees in Palestine. I want to hear his voice. & # 39;
Abdul Aziz, who saved lives by running on the shooter at the Linwood Islamic Center, celebrates with members of the public in Christchurch High Court Thursday after the conviction of Brenton Harrison Tarrant
Members of the public gather outside the High Court to assist relatives of victims killed in the 2019 Twin Mosque shootings
Ms. Qasem's moving testimony came alongside those who gave more specific addresses.
The rich emotions in the courtroom contrast sharply with the everyday collegiality in the halls of the Christchurch courthouse between sessions.
Due to limited court space due to COVID-related social distancing restrictions, victims have forfeited their right to a nearby helper so that more victims can sit in the small courtroom.
They wore or wore white roses on their lapels, carried pictures of dead family members, while one carried a toy panda.
SCHEDULE OF TERROR: HOW THE CHRISTCHURCH MASSACRE REQUESTED 51 DEVELOPED
A 28-year-old Australian entered a mosque in central Christchurch on Friday afternoon and opened fire on people who had gathered in the building. 51 people were killed and dozens more injured.
The incident happened on March 15, 2019 in New Zealand time.
1.40 p.m .: First reports of a shooting at a mosque in central Christchurch.
A man entered the mosque with an automatic weapon and opened fire on people inside.
2:11 p.m .: The police confirmed that they were in a developing situation in Christchruch.
Gunshots can be heard in the area in front of the Masid Al Noor Mosque on Deans Avenue.
Witnesses said they heard several gunshots. One said she tried to give CPR to an injured person but they died.
2:17 p.m.: Several schools have been closed in Christchurch.
People who were in the mosque began to walk covered in blood and with gunshot wounds.
2.47 clock: Initial reports of six deaths, three in critical condition and three with serious injuries.
2:54 p.m .: Police Commissioner Mike Bush said the situation was "serious and developing" and urged people to stay inside and stay out of the streets.
The Canterbury District Health Board activated its mass disaster plan.
3:12 p.m.: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has canceled her afternoon arrangements.
3:21 pm: Christchurch City Council has closed many of its central city buildings.
3:33 p.m.: Initial reports of a bomb in a beige Subaru that crashed on Strickland Street, two miles from the shootings.
3.40 p.m.: Police confirmed that several mosques were attacked at the same time in Christchurch.
3.45 p.m.: Reports of multiple shots in the ongoing shootings.
3:59 p.m.: 300 people are said to have been in the moque.
4 p.m.: One person has been confirmed to be in custody, but warnings are issued that others may be out there.
Police Commissioner Mike Bush urges Muslims across New Zealand to stay away from their local mosque.
4.10 p.m.: Jacinda Ardern calls Friday "one of the darkest days in New Zealand".
17:27: First reports about a second shoot.
A witness said a Muslim local chased the riflemen in the Linwood mosque and shot them in "self-defense".
5:31 p.m.: Four people are in custody. including a woman.
Several deaths have been reported.
7:07 p.m.: It has been confirmed that an AR15 rifle was used in the attack.
7.20 p.m.: Dunedin Street has been cordoned off.
The attackers also reportedly wanted to attack the Al-Huda mosque.
7:26 p.m.: At least 40 people have been confirmed dead, confirmed Jacinda Ardern.
7:34 p.m.: Confirmed 48 people were treated in the hospital.
7.46 p.m.: Britomart train station in central Auckland evacuated after bags were found unattended.
The bags were not classified as suspicious.
8:35 p.m.: The New Zealand government confirmed that this is the first time the terror level has been raised from low to high.
9:03 p.m.: Police Commissioner Mike Bush confirms the death toll has risen to 49.
Brenton Tarrant was later charged with murder, and the death toll rose to 51.
(tagsToTranslate) Dailymail (t) messages