French 'freezer babies' woman released from jail
A French woman who killed three of her own babies, burning one corpse and hiding the others in the family freezer, has been freed after spending four years behind bars, officials said Friday.
Veronique Courjault was sentenced in June 2009 to eight years in jail after she admitted to smothering two baby boys born in secret at her expat home in South Korea in 2002 and 2003, and a third child born in France in 1999.
Now aged 42, and with two sons aged 13 and 15, Courjault was released on Friday having served half her sentence after the time she spent in remand since her arrest in October 2006 was taken into consideration.
"It's a relief... We can finally start again and the future is ahead of us," her husband Jean-Louis Coujault, who proclaimed his support for his wife throughout the case, told RTL radio.
Her lawyer Helen Delhommais said that Courjault had been freed on condition that she did not talk to the media.
Courjault hid two pregnancies from her husband after he moved the family to the South Korean capital Seoul to take a job as an engineer for the US car parts company Delphi.
Jean-Louis Courjault found the infants' bodies in the family freezer in July 2006 after going downstairs to put some fish in the icebox. He was initially charged as an accomplice, but the charges were later dropped.
The couple at first insisted they had no idea who the infants were, but after DNA tests showed they were the parents, Veronique Courjault admitted to their murder.
She later testified that she burned the body of a third baby in the fireplace of their home in France in 1999.
Courjault could have faced life in jail for the triple infanticide, but prosecutors had finally sought 10 years.
© 2010 AFP