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Sudden development in mushroom cook case

Erin Patterson was charged months after four members of her ex-husband’s family fell ill. Picture: 9 NEWS.
Erin Patterson was charged months after four members of her ex-husband’s family fell ill. Picture: 9 NEWS.

Accused mushroom poisoner Erin Patterson will return to court almost two weeks earlier than expected after a “special mention” date was set down.

The 49-year-old mother was due to reappear in the Latrobe Valley Magistrates’ Court on May 3, almost six months to the day after her arrest late last year.

Ms Patterson was charged with three counts of murder after her former in-laws Don and Gail Patterson and Gail’s sister Heather Wilkinson died after allegedly eating a poisonous beef wellington dish at her home on July 29 last year.

Erin Patterson has denied any wrongdoing in the deaths. Picture: 9News.
Erin Patterson has denied any wrongdoing in the deaths. Picture: 9News.

She is also facing five counts of attempted murder, four of which relate to alleged attempts on her ex-husband Simon Patterson’s life and one for Heather’s husband Ian Wilkinson, who survived.

Police will allege the symptoms the two elderly couples experienced were consistent with death cap mushroom poisoning.

Heather Wilkinson and her husband Korumburra pastor Ian Wilkinson. Picture: Facebook.
Heather Wilkinson and her husband Korumburra pastor Ian Wilkinson. Picture: Facebook.
Don and Gail Patterson died in early August 2023. Picture: supplied
Don and Gail Patterson died in early August 2023. Picture: supplied

This week, Ms Patterson was listed to return to court on April 22 for a case-management hearing before her committal mention the following Friday.

The new listing comes after Victoria Police confirmed last week that detectives had finalised their case against the former air-traffic controller and served the brief on Ms Patterson’s lawyers.

She has denied all wrongdoing.