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'Canadian Psycho' was diagnosed with schizophrenia

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

A Canadian former porn actor accused of murdering and dismembering a Chinese man had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia several years earlier, according to documents released Wednesday.

Luka Rocco Magnotta was treated for "a major psychiatric disorder" in 2005 when he was convicted of fraud, according to a doctor's letter filed with the Ontario Court of Justice in June of that year.

"He has been suffering from this condition (paranoid schizophrenia) for more than five years, and he has had admissions to inpatient units at various hospitals," psychiatrist Thuraisamy Sooriabalan wrote.

Magnotta was treated with antipsychotic medications, as well as drugs to reduce anxiety and help him sleep, according to the daily Globe and Mail, which with other media had applied to the court to have the letter released.

Magnotta -- who was then using his given name Eric Clinton Newman -- attended supportive psychotherapy and health education but did not always take his medications, according to Sooriabalan.

"As far as the prognosis is concerned, as long as Mr. Newman continues to take the medications regularly, and attends the outpatient department as advised, the prognosis is fair," Sooriabalan wrote.

"But if he does not comply in taking the medication, he would be prone to relapse of his symptoms, which include paranoia, auditory hallucinations, fear of the unknown, etc."

A Montreal court last month began assessing evidence against Magnotta, who is accused of butchering 33-year-old student Lin Jun last May and posting footage of the killing on the Internet.

The court has heard pre-trial testimony from more than 20 witnesses since the hearings began, mostly police officers and experts, while viewing photographs and video.

Court restrictions have limited reporting of the hearings.

When the proceedings resume the judge is expected to hear evidence by video-link from witnesses in Vancouver and Europe, where Magnotta was arrested last year after an international manhunt.

Magnotta, 30, the so-called "Canadian Psycho," has pleaded not guilty to first degree murder and other charges, including committing indignities to a body and harassing Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

Police have said Magnotta, who had been a gay porn actor and sex worker, stabbed his victim with an ice pick before carving up his body, sexually abusing the corpse, filming the act and posting the video online.

amc/jk

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130403/canadian-psycho-was-diagnosed-schizophrenia