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Greek Woman Sentenced to Life Imprisonment for Murdering Three Daughters

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A Greek court has handed down a life sentence to a woman convicted of killing her nine-year-old daughter and suspected of murdering two other daughters, stirring national outrage and introspection.

The cases involving 35-year-old Roula Pispirigou have sparked widespread condemnation and reflection across Greece.

Following death threats against Pispirigou, the government issued calls for calm. Riot police were deployed outside the court as a crowd gathered to hurl abuse at her shortly after her arrest.

An Athens court found Pispirigou guilty of premeditated voluntary homicide in the death of nine-year-old Georgina.

Having been in detention for two years, Pispirigou also awaits judgment over the suspected killings of her daughters Malena, who was three-and-a-half years old when she died in 2019, and Iris, who was only six months old when she died in 2021.

Pispirigou was found to have poisoned Georgina with ketamine on January 29, 2022, a substance commonly used as an anesthetic in veterinary surgery and in some treatments for depression.

Georgina had been admitted to the hospital multiple times over the previous 10 months after suffering convulsions that left her tetraplegic.

The court determined that her mother had attempted to kill her during at least one of her previous hospital stays.

Malena had been diagnosed with acute liver failure, while the cause of Iris’s death had initially been attributed to heart failure. However, subsequent tests following Georgina’s death revealed signs of asphyxiation.

Greek media have likened Pispirigou, a trained nurse, to a “modern-day Medea,” referencing a figure from Greek mythology who murders her children after her husband leaves her for another woman.

Throughout the trial, which began in January last year, Pispirigou steadfastly maintained her innocence.

In a separate incident, a jury in New Zealand convicted South African woman Lauren Anne Dickason in August 2023 of murdering her three young daughters, sentencing her to life imprisonment for each killing.

In 2020, another mother confessed to killing her three young daughters in an apartment in Vienna, according to Austrian police following her arrest.

In yet another tragic event, the Enugu State Police Command arrested a 52-year-old man, Ifeanyi Amadikwa, in the Enugu East Local Government Area of the state in 2022 for allegedly killing his three daughters.

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