• Germany's news in English
 

Mother jailed for killing her five newborns

Published: 21 Mar 2013 19:09 GMT+01:00

The 29-year-old woman had admitted during the trial in the northern city of Flensburg to secretly giving birth and immediately killing the five newborns between 2006 and 2012.

Three of the infants were suffocated and two stabbed with scissors, the court concluded, finding the woman, who is from the town of Husum and was not named, guilty of five counts of manslaughter.

Although the trial was unable to clarify exactly why the woman killed the infants, she had said in questioning by the police that her husband did not want any more children.

Presiding judge Michael Lembke said that, when it came to pregnancy and birth, the defendant had virtually "suppressed, ignored, completely blanked it out" and that the labour pains had taken her by surprise.

But her actions were always unplanned, he said. Although an offender, she was "no monster", he added.

A psychiatric assessor ordered by the court said her motive remained unclear.

The woman, who has two children of school age, gave birth at home or in the woods. Two bodies were found in a paper recycling plant and a car park in 2006 and 2007.

Last year when the woman was asked to provide a routine DNA sample as part of investigations, she turned herself in and took police to the bodies of three further babies hidden in her cellar.

Her husband was described at the time the woman was charged as "completely devastated". He told police he knew nothing about the pregnancies.

The case is thought to be the worst to come to light in Germany since 2005, when a mother was sentenced to 15 years in prison after killing eight of her newborns.

AFP/mry

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

21:59 March 21, 2013 by chicagolive
9 years thats IT.....so basically as long as you pay your taxes you will never have to do real time for a serious crime.
02:38 March 22, 2013 by RainerL
That equates to nearly 1.5 years for each Child. Is that all they where worth??

This Women should have been put away for many more years than that. It sends the wrong message. Kill 9 People and you only get a few years plus a feed at no financial cost.

Pathetic!
03:46 March 22, 2013 by Bier_me
Can't believe she only got 9 years. Not sure how the judge thinks that walking out to woods to give birth and kill your baby is not premeditated. Sounds like she had a plan and executed it. How is that "unplanned" like the judge advocates? Maybe there is more to the story, but based on this article it looks like a serious injustice to the victims.
08:57 March 22, 2013 by kmcc1976
I am always so shocked at the leniency of sentenging here in Germany. In the US this woman have received multiple life sentences. The crime is sickening and justice was absolutley not served.
15:50 March 22, 2013 by maxbrando
No wonder the American press ignores Germany. Even the left wing American idiots are ashamed of you and your "social justice" system.
18:54 March 22, 2013 by bwjijsdtd
Hey maxbrando, why do you have to revert to Americans as left wing idiots. If you don't like us, that's okay, but there is no reason to bite the hand that feeds you. As far as justice goes, if she were in Texas, shw would have seen her last day of blue sky ... A hemp rope and a mesquite tree works wonders ... you should try it ...
15:36 March 23, 2013 by raandy
The sentence seems light, for the crime. Interestingly the US leads the so called free world in incarceration rates.1 out of every 100 males is incarcerated. I am not so sure long incarceration rates deters crime. Admittedly 25 % of those are for non violent drug crimes.
11:10 March 24, 2013 by DOZ
Dis she have a couple of dogs.
Today's headlines
Bayern fans bring club's earliest years to light
FC Bayern's first team in 1925, the year of the commemorative publication. Photo: Jewish Museum

Bayern fans bring club's earliest years to light

For decades the early history of FC Bayern München was forgotten, but FCB fans have re-discovered a book from 1925 documenting the club's founding moments. READ  

Top spy admits: We're 'dependent' on NSA
Gerhard Schindler admitted that the BND had made mistakes in its handling of NSA requests. Photo: DPA

Top spy admits: We're 'dependent' on NSA

The head of the German Intelligence Agency (BND) told a special parliamentary committee on Thursday that his agency is 'dependent on' the American National Security Agency (NSA). READ  

Autobahn driver suffers drone windscreen smash
Photo: Polizei Bochum

Autobahn driver suffers drone windscreen smash

After a low flying drone crashed into the windscreen of a car on the Autobahn outside Bochum, police announced on Thursday they are looking for witnesses. READ  

Business confidence slack as growth slows
A worker puts the finishing touches to BMWs at the car producer's Regensburg, Bavaria production line. Photo: DPA

Business confidence slack as growth slows

German business confidence slipped fractionally from its previous high level in May, as the upturn in Europe's biggest economy continues, the Ifo economic institute said Friday. READ  

Two criminals on the run after daylight escape
Two fugitives on the run since Thursday. Photo: Polizei Kleve

Two criminals on the run after daylight escape

Police are searching for two fugitives in North Rhine-Westphalia after a young woman freed a man from custody as he was being taken to the doctor. READ  

Merkel pushes for Greece deal at Euro meet
Angela Merkel with Francois Hollande and Alexis Tsipras in Riga. Photo: DPA

Merkel pushes for Greece deal at Euro meet

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras held "friendly and constructive" debt talks with the leaders of France and Germany Thursday, but gave no sign of a breakthrough ahead of a crucial June deadline. READ  

Wage disparity drives up inequality in Germany
A man begs on the street in Hamburg. Photo: DPA.

Wage disparity drives up inequality in Germany

A report on Thursday showed that while the gap between rich and poor has somewhat stabilized in Germany since the economic crisis, the rich and highly educated continue to gain more while the poor struggle, creating some of the biggest wealth gaps among developed countries. READ  

This week in history
Home-grown terrorists stand trial in Stuttgart
The trial took place in a specially built courtroom. Photo: DPA

Home-grown terrorists stand trial in Stuttgart

Forty years ago, on May 21 1975, a trial began in Stuttgart against the leaders of the Red Army Faction (RAF), a Marxist organisation which began an underground war against the Federal Republic five years earlier. READ  

Minimum wage threatens Germany's fave pickles
The wonderful world of gherkins. Photo: DPA

Minimum wage threatens Germany's fave pickles

Vegetable farmers in Brandenburg are worried about the future of the famous Spreewald gherkins, as the new national minimum wage has driven prices up. READ  

Police seize tiny lamb from Munich brothel
Photo: Polizei Bayern

Police seize tiny lamb from Munich brothel

Police in Munich raided a brothel after it was reported that a prostitute there possessed contraband. During their search they found marijuana, other narcotics... and a three-week-old lamb. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Travel
Why the train strike is bad for passengers and workers
National
Meet Germany's Eurovision hope
Business & Money
Is 2015 a new moment for jobsharing?
Features
How the LGBT rights movement was born in Germany
National
Why you don't make bomb jokes at the airport
National
Why Germany needs a little less tipple
National
Who Germans and Americans trust... and don't
Politics
What the UK election means for Germany
National
Why Germany is great for mums
Features
The Germans with GI dads
Five ways Germany falls short on gay rights
Travel
Giant tortoise found riding Munich rail
National
FCK CPS? A-OK with court
Politics
Opinion: Brexit's dangers for Germany
Features
Smart kids all want to work for BMW
National
Minister shows off top Denglisch
National
Germany's 'other genocide' in Africa
National
Arms firms get a 'must do better' mark on ethics
Sport
Bayern's anticlimactic 25th Bundesliga win
Politics
A Greek learning politics in Germany
Features
The battle of the "Gates of Berlin"
National
Germany's 'very poor' lobbying record
National
Germany's favourite baby names of 2014
Politics
Merkel's 15 years at the top of German politics
Travel
Lowest of the low: how woman exploited Germanwings crash
Features
Spice up asparagus season with The Local's serving suggestions
Sport
Football and the €30,000 firework
Technology
Why scientists oppose killer robots
National
'Cannibal cop' gets 8 years
National
Which city is Germany's worst for drivers?
Technology
Electrifying 'Ostalgia'
National
Cologne Cathedral returns from space
Pupils mourn lost classmates
National
Freed after 25 years on death row
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
10 things you didn’t know about Zagreb (and why you should go)
Is your workload 'out of control'? You're not alone...
Sponsored Article
What expat parents should ask before choosing a school
Features
Paddy's Day, Berlin style
National
Why east Germans are happy to get it on on camera
National
Uplifting thoughts to get you through the last week of winter
National
What would you do with a 250-year-old pretzel?
National
Who wants the Olympics more - Hamburg or Berlin?
Features
Just why is the German flag Schwarz, Rot, Gold?
Business & Money
Getting German workers and bosses thinking positive
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

6,780
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd