A mother and daughter were found guilty of killing their 11-year-old son by placing a pillow under his chin in the bathtub, then strangling him with a belt, the prosecution said.
In another, a man was accused of beating his girlfriend to death in their home.
In the other, a mother and son were convicted of killing a mother’s 2-year old daughter in front of her children.
Both pleaded guilty to manslaughter and have been sentenced to up to 15 years in prison.
A mother, a 29-year former teacher, is serving a 10-year sentence for the manslaughter of her 7-year friend who died in a fall.
In sentencing the two women, Justice Michael McGovern said they were “an absolute disgrace to our society” and the victims of their crimes deserved better than to be “perpetuated by the criminals who commit them”.
He said the families of the two victims “should be commended for their courage in standing up for their right to life”.
“I hope they can be rehabilitated and their lives can be restored.”
He said there was no “trivial” difference between the murders of the mother and the father and they were both “wickedly cruel”.
He also said there were “grave implications” for the families if they could not come to terms with the deaths.
In their case, the woman who killed her son was also convicted of manslaughter.
The prosecutor said the two men were “the most evil people on earth” and “the murderers” of their victim.
They had killed a young boy and a young girl, he said.
“I want them to be ashamed of themselves and I hope they will be ashamed for the children who are lost,” he said of the victims.
The prosecution argued the families “cannot have the courage to live a normal life”. “
This is a sad day for all of us.”
The prosecution argued the families “cannot have the courage to live a normal life”.
Mr McGovern rejected the suggestion they should not have been given the death penalty.
He told the families: “You can’t go through life with a conscience.
Justice McGovern thanked the families for their “great courage” and said they would be “reunited in Heaven”. “
And if you don’t get a fair trial, you are going be condemned.”
Justice McGovern thanked the families for their “great courage” and said they would be “reunited in Heaven”.
He told them he would consider their applications for parole if they “receive the right amount of rehabilitation”.
Justice McDavid also said he was “pleased” with the “very generous” defence that the two were given.
He described them as “very strong and articulate” and told them: “I know you will have to live with the memories of this horrible crime for a very long time.”
The pair were given an immediate discharge and were not allowed to live together for at least three years after their convictions.
They were both sentenced to five years in jail.
In a separate case, a woman who was charged with a “shocking” assault on her daughter and her daughter’s friend was acquitted of manslaughter and sentenced to 15 months in jail for her involvement in the attack.
Her defence lawyer, Michael Smith, said the prosecution had tried to “shackle” the victim’s family “by using all the resources available to them”.
“They are entitled to their own views about the law,” he told the ABC.
The victim’s mother told the court she had been “extremely hurt and embarrassed” and that the case was “a huge injustice”.
“The way I feel is that I have a right to have justice,” she said.
Mr Smith said she was “deeply ashamed” of what happened to her daughter.
“She is now going to prison and there is no doubt she will spend the rest of her life behind bars.”
He described the attack as “one of the worst incidents of domestic violence I have ever witnessed”.
Justice Smith said there would be a review of sentencing rules for the women’s offences to ensure the families received “the appropriate treatment”.
“It is not a question of fairness, it is a question about the right and responsibility of the offender to be treated as an individual and not as a criminal,” he added.
Justice McGregor said the crime of manslaughter was “not an offence which is automatically recognised as murder”.
“In many respects it is an offence of violence,” he continued.
“The law recognises that and therefore the offender must be punished accordingly.”
In sentencing, he described the crime as “unspeakable and utterly incomprehensible”.
“These men are truly wicked, and their crimes were beyond all description,” he concluded.