German mother admits killing babies, but says she can’t remember how many

A German woman on trial in one of Germany’s worst infanticide cases has confessed to killing several of her babies, but said she could not remember how many. Andrea Goeppner, 45, is charged with four out of a possible eight babies’ murders after their remains were found wrapped in towels and plastic bags last year in a case that has horrified the country. Asked how many of the babies Goeppner confessed to killing, defence lawyer Till Wagler said: “It could have been two, three or four.” Prosecutors have been unable to pursue murder charges for the other four infants, because one was stillborn and the others were so badly decomposed that it was uncertain they would have been alive at birth.

She sought simply to remain sexually active without any thought about the consequences or the value of a newborn child.

State prosecutors

The woman’s estranged husband, Johann Goeppner, 55, is charged with complicity for failing to stop the killings, which took place between 2003 and 2013. In her confession, read out by her lawyer, the mother said she had given birth to each of the eight babies at home alone and had wrapped every infant in a hand towel. She would immediately suffocate any baby that moved or cried, and then put the body in a plastic bag or containers and hid it in the apartment, said the defence lawyer. The grisly remains were uncovered last year in Goeppner’s apartment in the Bavarian small town of Wallenfels.