Unfit declaration upheld in deadly house fire case

03.06.2021 - 15:52
Mynd með færslu
 Mynd: Þór Ægisson
Marek Moszczynski has this afternoon been declared unfit to face punishment for killing three and attempting to kill ten more by setting fire to the house at Bræðraborgarstígur 1 in Reykjavík late last June. Instead of prison, he will be securely accommodated at a suitable institution. The court's decision is in accordance with a psychiatrists' report concluding that he is unfit to face charges on mental health grounds.

Moszczynski was not present in court today and has four weeks to decide whether to appeal the verdict to the Landsréttur appeals court.

The main part of the trial ended on 5th May and the defendent pleaded not guilty at the start of the trial. Some 30 people testified before a full panel of judges, including former residents of the house, neighbours, police, and psychiatrists.

The house burnt down on 25th June 2020 and three people were arrested the same day, including Moszczynski. He was remanded in custody while the other two were released without charge.

Two women, aged 24 and 26, and a man aged 21 died in the fire. 17 people requested compensation, including for funeral costs, and medical costs. Moszczynski was sentenced to pay between 2 and 3 million krónur in compensation, which is paid upfront from the national treasury.

Prosecutors called for a sentence of life imprisonment, with a back-up request of 20 years' improsinment. Judges ruled, however, that the defendent was unfit to face punishment and he will instead be taken to a secure psychiatric unit. The decision is in agreement with psychiatrists' assessment of Moszczynski.

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