Poisoner of Melilla jailed for maxiumum 84 years
27 September 2005, MELILLA — A woman who poisoned her husband and two daughters so she could start a new life with a man she met through the Internet was jailed for 84 years - the maximum sentence possible.
27 September 2005
MELILLA — A woman who poisoned her husband and two daughters so she could start a new life with a man she met through the Internet was jailed for 84 years - the maximum sentence possible.
Francisca Ballesteros, 36, dubbed 'The Poisoner of Melilla', killed her husband Antonio Gonzalez and two daughters with a cyanide-based medicine over a 14 year period.
She told the court in Melilla she went to Tenerife with a man she met on the Internet, but denied that they had made plans for a future together.
Ballesteros said she contacted the man through a chat room, telling him she was a widow and had had two children who died.
She denied poisoning her two daughters and said she gave them medication because they were depressed.
Ballesteros claimed she did not know this medication could kill.
She was convicted of poisoning her five-month-old daughter Florinda between June and August 1990 with calcified cyanide in the medication 'Colme'
Thirteen years later, in 2003, she started to mix the same cyanide-based poison in the food and drink of her husband Antonio, 42, and her daughter Sandra.
Her husband died on 12 January 2004.
She also poisoned her 15-year-old daughter, who gradually suffered declining health until she died on 4 June 2004.
She also attempted to murder her youngest son, Antonio, 12, by giving him doses of cyanide and two other drugs, Zolpidem and Bromazepam, which led to the progressive decline of his health. He had to be taken to hospital twice.
In her defence, Ballesteros claimed her husband was an alcoholic who abused her and planned to leave her, taking the children.
The court imposed the maximum sentence after she was convicted of three murders and one attempted murder for the "cruelty, indeference and planning" of her crimes.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news