Mother who murdered young daughters in 'spasm of violence' jailed for 24 years
A mother who murdered her two young daughters "in a spasm of violence" has been told she must serve a minimum of 24 years in prison.
Samira Lupidi, 24, stabbed 17-month-old Jasmine Weaver and three-year-old Evelyn Lupidi at a women's refuge in November last year.
Lupidi was jailed for life at Bradford Crown Court by Mr Justice Edis, who said the girls were "both as vulnerable as anyone can be".
The judge heard how Lupidi was placed in a refuge with the girls after she called police to their house in Heckmondwike, West Yorkshire, claiming her partner Carl Weaver had been violent.
Sentencing Lupidi in her absence, the judge acknowledged she was suffering from a depressive disorder at the time of the "violent rage" which led to the killings.
He said: "I believe you killed these children in a spasm of violence triggered by a weekend of violent arguments."
The judge added: "You had formed a delusional belief that you were in danger of being killed and that you were going to be abandoned and that you would not see the children again."
The judge said Lupidi stabbed each of her daughters nine times after arguments continued with her partner by phone.
He said that Italian Lupidi was friendless and alone in a foreign country and came to see her partner's family as "the enemy".
The judge said: "You reacted to this very difficult situation by saying 'if I cannot have them, neither can he'."
He said: "This is a crime that speaks of rage and I sentence you on the basis that you killed them in anger and out of a desire for revenge.
"Even a week later you were telling the prison medical staff that the most important thing was that Carl Weaver was suffering."
Lupidi admitted manslaughter on the grounds of diminished responsibility but denied murder.
A jury of six men and six women found her guilty of murder on Tuesday after only 90 minutes of deliberation.
Lupidi, who was in court for the verdicts, sobbed uncontrollably when she was found guilty and was comforted by a security guard.
There were cries of "yes" from the packed public gallery.
The judge said Lupidi killed Evelyn first and then her sister.
"Jasmine, you later said, had been crying while you were killing her sister in a way she had never cried before," he said.
He added: "It does not take much imagination to know what happened in that dreadful scene and the way in which Jasmine died has traumatised their father who has only just learned of it."
But the judge said: "All the evidence positively shows that these children were the centre of your life and that you loved them. You were a very good mother to them and cared for them very well."
He said: "In the end, humanity requires an allowance to be made for the fact that you killed the things you loved in a temporary rage which will have everlasting and disastrous consequences for you."
The girls' grandfather, Peter Weaver, read a statement outside court surrounded by members of his family.
He said: "We have been left utterly devastated by the tragic events of last November.
"We were preparing to celebrate Evelyn and Jasmine's christening with their great-grandparents who had flown in from Italy for the special occasion.
"It should have been a joyous time, but instead Evelyn and Jasmine were cruelly taken away from us.
"We will all remember that day. Our lives are now filled with sorrow and our broken hearts will never heal.
"The girls were typical toddlers always wanting to play, always smiling and happy but never that far from being mischievous.
"They have been robbed of their precious lives and we as a family have been robbed of the opportunity to see those beautiful little girls grow into beautiful young women.
"They were loved deeply and are missed terribly."