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Castro: 'We had a lot of harmony in that home'

Addressing the court Ariel Castro said: "Finally I would like to apologise to the victims. To Amanda Berry and Gina De Jesus and Michelle Knight. I am truly sorry for what happened.

Tearing up Castro continued: "To this day I'm trying to answer my own questions, I don't know why....I had everything going on for me...I just hope they can find it in their hearts to forgive me. Because we had a lot of harmony going on in that home."

Ariel Castro: 'I know it was wrong but I'm not violent'

Addressing the court before his sentencing Ariel Castro said: "I know it's wrong and I'm not trying to make excuses I know I'm 100% wrong for doing that. But I'm trying to say I'm not a violent person.

He continued: "I was driven by sex.

"Amanda [Berry], she got in my car without knowing who it was, I'm not trying to put in her, but I'm just saying I'm not a violent predator, I'm not a monster. I'm just sick, I have an addiction, just like an alcoholic has an addiction."


Ariel Castro: 'I'm not a monster I am a victim of porn'

Ariel Castro has spoken to the court ahead of his sentencing for 937 charges related to the kidnap of three women for over a decade in his home.

Castro told the court:

Ariel Castro speaking to the court.

"I stated before that I was a victim of sex when I was a child. This led me into viewing pornography for my whole life...These people are trying to paint me as a monster and I'm not a monster, I'm sick. My sexual problems have been so bad on my mind, I'm impulsive."

"I believe I am a victim to porn."

Victim tells Castro: 'You will face hell for eternity'

Michelle Knight was the only one of Ariel Castro's victims to speak herself in court, she said: "Days never got shorter, days turned in to nights, nights turned in to days. The years turned in to eternity.

"Nobody should ever have to go through what I went through.

Michelle Knight speaking in court.

Through tears she told Castro: "I spent 11 years in hell, now your hell is just beginning. I will overcome all this that happened, but you will face hell for eternity."

Castro victim hugs prosecution team in court ahead of sentence

One of Ariel Castro victim's was seen in court seen embracing a member of the prosecution team ahead of his sentencing.

Michelle Knight was held captive for 11 years by the former school bus driver, who abducted and sexually abused her.

Castro was sitting at the front of the courtroom when Knight arrived. Ms Knight is expected to give a victim statement in court shortly. Castro is expected to be sentenced to life in prison.


Cleveland kidnap victim's handwritten letter to police

One of the women who was imprisoned for years in the Cleveland home of Ariel Castro has written to local police officers thanking them for their work.

NBC News displayed a copy of the letter from Michelle Knight in which she writes that "life is tough, but I'm tougher".

An excerpt of the letter from Michelle Knight to Cleveland Police Credit: Cleveland Police

Cleveland police posted the handwritten note on their Facebook page, but it has since been removed.

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