Italian mother jailed for killing son

However lawyers for Anna Maria Franzoni, 33, say they plan to appeal the sentence.

The non-jury trial lasted only a day in a closed courtroom in the city of Aosta, near the French border, after Franzoni’s lawyers asked for a speedy hearing, in a bid to avoid the lengthy proceedings common in most Italian criminal trials.

The judge’s statement detailing why the stiffest penalty possible was administered will be released after 45 days.

The brutal slaying in January 2002 of Samuele Lorenzi shocked Italy, where mothers are revered as virtual saints.

The court heard he was bludgeoned on the head with a heavy object, believed to be a gardening tool, while sleeping in the family home in the upscale Alpine village of Cogne, near many Italian ski resorts.

Franzoni said she found him in a pool of blood on her bed after returning from walking her elder son to a bus stop.

The family’s doctor said that Samuele had died of an aneurysm.

Franzoni soon emerged as the only suspect, with the key evidence of her pyjamas found stained with her son’s blood next to his body, but it was never established whether she had been wearing them at the time of the murder.

Despite the suspicion, Franzoni remained free and had another child a year after Samuele’s murder.

But her lawyers say Franzoni might soon announce the name of the person she claims carried out the killing.

“We are upset and we are surprised by this conclusion,” said defence layer Carlo Taormina.

“We take note of this sentence, which we do not support and that we will continue to fight.”

The case has been dogged by serious investigative blunders and has been widely covered by the Italian press.

The crime scene was not sealed immediately, so more than a dozen people tracked snow in and out of the house, meaning much forensic evidence was likely spoiled.

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