Renewed push to pardon Kathleen Folbigg

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
·2-min read
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Leading Australian scientists are lobbying the NSW attorney-general to recommend a pardon for Kathleen Folbigg, who has spent almost 18 years in jail after being convicted of killing four of her babies.

The renewed call for her release comes almost six months after 90 eminent scientists submitted a petition to NSW Governor Margaret Beazley, who's waiting for advice from Mark Speakman.

In April, the Australian Academy of Science offered to brief Mr Speakman on new genetic evidence.

Mr Speakman requested the new evidence be submitted via Ms Folbigg's legal representatives, which occurred in June.

The evidence includes new peer-reviewed genetic findings by an international team of 27 scientists published in a top international cardiology journal, Europace, in November 2020.

It showed two of Ms Folbigg's children had genetic mutations that predisposed them to sudden death in childhood from lethal heart arrhythmias.

Forensic pathologists had declared natural causes of death for the other two children.

Australian Academy of Science President Professor John Shine is amongst the petition signatories and says there is reasonable doubt about Folbigg's conviction.

"The NSW attorney-general now has sufficient medical and scientific evidence before him that provides an alternative explanation for the deaths of the Folbigg children, that carries more weight than the circumstantial evidence used to convict her," Professor Shine said.

"We urge the NSW attorney-general to expedite this matter and advise the NSW governor to pardon Kathleen Folbigg and release her from jail."

In a statement on Monday night, a spokesman for Mr Speakman said the attorney-general could not advise the governor until Ms Folbigg's legal team indicated it had submitted all its material.

"As the petitioner's matter is the subject of continuing court proceedings and the attorney general continues to consider a petition on which he will advise the governor, any further comment at this stage would be inappropriate," he said.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting