Christchurch mosque attack sentencing: Terrorist Brenton Tarrant won't speak at hearing

Warning: This article discusses the Christchurch mosque attack.

Christchurch terrorist Brenton Harrison Tarrant does not intend to speak in his own defence before Justice Cameron Mander imposes sentence in the High Court at Christchurch on Thursday. 

At the third day of the sentencing hearing ending Wednesday, the Judge asked Tarrant what his intentions were. The 29-year-old was asked what he planned, during a chamber hearing, because he had decided a few weeks ago to represent himself.

Tarrant - facing sentence on 51 murder charges, 40 attempted murders, and a terrorism charge - said he did not intend to speak himself, though the judge explained he was entitled to do so.

Instead, he had asked the stand-by counsel, Pip Hall QC, to say something on his behalf. 

Hall QC said his address to the court would be "very brief".

Justice Cameron Mander set Thursday's schedule with Crown Prosecutor Mark Zarifeh going first with an address of about 30 minutes at 10am, followed by Hall QC, and then a 15 minute address by the counsel appointed for the court, an amicus curiae, Kerry Cook.

After that, Justice Mander will impose sentence at a hearing which is taking place in High Court 12 and being beamed into seven other Christchurch courts by video-link, so that families and supporters of the victims can watch the proceedings, and many of the media can also watch.

The court has heard 90 victim impact statements in the past three days.