South African mother found guilty of killing three daughters in New Zealand

A New Zealand jury has found a South African woman guilty on Wednesday of murdering her three young daughters with media reports suggesting she could face a life sentence for each of the killings.

Lauren Anne Dickason murdered her two-year-old twins and their six-year-old sister in September 2021 at their residence in Timaru, a city of 29,000 on the South Island. This tragic incident occurred about a month after the family had relocated from South Africa.

Reports indicate that a majority decision reached by a jury consisting of eight women and four men concluded that Dickason was not mentally unsound during the time of the murders. Following a month-long trial in the city of Christchurch, she was found guilty of murder.

Upon returning home after a dinner with colleagues, Lauren Anne Dickason’s husband, Graham, discovered their three children lifeless and his wife in a critical state, according to previous reports by New Zealand media.

According to Radio New Zealand, the prosecution argued that Dickason was aware that her actions in killing her daughters were morally reprehensible and constituted murder.

Reportedly, some members of the jury were observed shedding tears as they exited the courtroom, as per media reports.

The presiding judge, Cameron Mander, has ordered that Dickason be held in a hospital psychiatric unit until her sentencing.

She has remained in the hospital since the time of the murders.

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