‘Desperate’ mother kills her three daughters

A woman in northern Italy killed her three children over the weekend, reportedly telling police afterwards that she was "desperate" and in poverty after her husband left the family.

'Desperate' mother kills her three daughters
The woman was questioned by police in hospital. Photo: Rosie Scammell

Edlira Dobrushi, from Albania, stabbed her three daughters, aged 13, 10 and four, on Sunday morning in the city of Lecco, TGcom24 reported. While the youngest were killed while they slept, the eldest reportedly tried to defend herself from her mother.

Dobrushi then put the children's’ bodies on a bed and called a neighbour, telling them, “my daughters are no more” before trying to commit suicide, the news channel said.

Dobrushi, in her late thirties, was taken to hospital with wrist injuries where she was questioned by police. “It was me, I was desperate,” the mother of three was quoted as telling investigators.

The family was in a dire economic situation and Dobrushi’s husband had recently left her because she suffered from depression, TGcom24 said.

The girls’ father, 45-year-old Bashkim Dobrushi, had moved out of the family home and was reportedly visiting his parents in his native Albania when the murders happened.

His brother, also living in Lecco, tracked him down to tell them his daughters had been killed. The father had reportedly started a new relationship and had gone home to tell his family he was separating from his wife.

Responding to the news, one of the Dobrushi family’s neighbours said they were “distraught”.

“I just can’t believe this act of madness. I knew Simona, Casey and Leandsy very well because I took them to school. They lived here for four or five years and never caused any problems. They were an absolutely normal family,” the neighbour told TGcom24.

The mother’s Facebook account has been taken down in recent hours, although it reportedly contained a series of photographs of her daughters describing them as “my strength” a week ago, and the youngest as “my guardian angel”.

The murders come just days after a woman in southern Italy stabbed her 11-year-old son to death before trying to kill herself. The mother disappeared with the boy after reportedly finding out her husband had had an affair.

READ MORE: Italian mother kills son over father's affair

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New York returns 214 stolen artworks to Italy in seven months

Authorities in New York announced on Thursday the return to Italy of 14 more antiquities, worth an estimated €2.3 million, as part of an investigation into smuggling of stolen artifacts.

New York returns 214 stolen artworks to Italy in seven months

The Manhattan District Attorney’s office has been conducting an extensive investigation over the past two years into looted antiquities that have ended up in New York museums and galleries — including the prestigious Metropolitan Museum of Art.

During a ceremony on Thursday with the Italian consul general and Italian police representatives, 14 more artifacts – some 2,600 years old – were officially returned to Italy, bringing the total number of repatriated pieces to that country over the past seven months to 214, District Attorney Alvin Bragg’s office said.

READ ALSO: Italian ‘art squad’ police recover 800 illegally-excavated archaeological finds

More than 700 pieces worth more than $100 million have been returned in the past year to 17 countries, including Italy as well as Cambodia, India, Pakistan, Egypt, Iraq, and Greece, the statement added.

New York, a hub of stolen antiquities trafficking for decades, set up a task force in 2017 to investigate the illicit trade.

According to the statement by District Attorney Bragg, who took office in January 2022, Thursday’s repatriation included the silver “Sicily Naxos Coin,” minted around 430 BCE and currently valued at half a million dollars.

Other notable items included ancient pottery dating to 510 BCE, and amarble head of Roman Emperor Hadrian, dating to 200 CE.

Among the culprits behind the 14 returned pieces, the statement said, were well-known art traffickers Giacomo Medici and Giovanni Franco Becchina, as well as Robert Hecht, the Paris-based American art dealer who died in 2012.

The traffickers had “relied on gangs of tombaroli (tomb raiders) to loot carefully chosen and insufficiently guarded archaeological sites throughout the Mediterranean,” it added.