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Terrorist Had Brain Damage

German terrorist Ulrike Meinhof had a brain operation in the 1960s that may have caused her to become one of Europe's most feared urban killers. German psychiatrist Bernhard Bogerts, who studied her brain for 5 years, says it showed "pathological modifications." Meinhof committed suicide in 1976, and her brain was removed without the family?s permission. She was sentenced to 8 years in prison in 1974, after a ruling that she was mentally competent to stand trial.

The neurologist who did the autopsy on Meinhof noticed changes to her brain caused by an operation for a tumor in 1962. Bogerts says the operation could have led to behavioral changes that turned her from an aspiring journalist into the co-founder of the Baader-Meinhof gang, that carried out a campaign of killing and bombing in the 1970s. "The slide into terror can be explained by the brain illness," he says.

Brain injury as the cause of extreme personality change is especially interesting in light of the recently-arrested snipers, John Allen Muhammad and John Lee Malvo, whose actions cannot be explained logically. See our Oct. 28 new story, ?What?s Different About a Killer?s Brain,? click here.

Learn the secrets of who we are?and were in the past?from ?The Mystery of the Crystal Skulls?,click here.

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