A woman who poisoned her lover with a deadly cocktail of morphine, valium and tramadol so she could steal his £170,000 life savings has been jailed.
Wendie-Sue Dent, 62, also known as the Black Widow, was handed a 25-year sentence on Monday for the murder of her lover, David Lawrence.
Lawrence was found dead inside his Morphett Vale home, south of Adelaide, Australia, in December 2015.
His post mortem revealed toxic levels of morphine in his system, as well as other drugs, including tramadol and valium.
She had been found guilty of the murder in April 2020, despite Dent repeatedly denying all charges against her.
Dent was accused of administering 20 doses of morphine and also faking Mr Lawrence’s will.
At sentencing on Monday, Justice Tim Stanley rejected suggestions she had acted in a 'self-induced intoxication' of opiates that had clouded her judgment.
Judge Stanley said Dent had preyed on his kindness and generosity and had compounded the hurt caused to the family by continuing to pursue his money.
He said: “Mr Lawrence was besotted with you.
“Ultimately you killed him for your own financial gain.”
Judge Stanley said: “I am not in a position to make a finding as to whether you administered the fatal cocktail or you induced Mr Lawrence to do so, but it makes no difference to your culpability for his death.
“Not only did you not demonstrate any contrition or remorse for your crime, but you have compounded the grief and suffering of Mr Lawrence's siblings by the continued pursuit of Mr Lawrence's money.
“Your actions demonstrate your determination to pursue the plan to enrich yourself through his murder.”
The judge imposed the mandatory head sentence of life in jail but set a non-parole period of 25 years, meaning she will not be eligible for parole until 2042.
Mr Lawrence’s nephew, Blake Lawrence, said the family was pleased with the outcome.
He said: “She exploited David. He was a kind, loving, gentle person and she took advantage of that for her own greed.
“She's a callous, remorseless individual. We're glad to see her stay behind bars.”
Dent has launched an appeal against her conviction, arguing the guilty verdict was unsafe and unsatisfactory based on the evidence at her trial, including her love for Mr Lawrence and his love for her.