The Australian man who killed 51 people at two mosques in New Zealand in 2019 meticulously planned his shooting rampage to maximise casualties, a prosecutor said at the start of sentencing hearings on Monday.
Brenton Tarrant, a self-confessed white supremacist, has pleaded guilty to 51 murder charges, 40 charges of attempted murder and one charge of committing a terrorist act in relation to the massacre in the southern city of Christchurch, which he streamed live on Facebook.
The 29-year-old faces a life prison term, possibly without parole, when he is sentenced later this week.
Handcuffed and dressed in grey prison clothes, Tarrant sat impassive as he looked directly at survivors and family members of those who died speaking about how their lives had been affected by the killings.
Crown prosecutor Barnaby Hawes said Tarrant told police after his arrest that he wanted to create fear among the Muslim population.
“He intended to instill fear into those he described as invaders, including the Muslim population or more generally non-European immigrants,” Hawes said.