A woman accused of seducing and killing an elderly man and poisoning three others, all called Robert, on the French Riviera was charged and remanded in custody on 29 June.
Patricia Dagorn, 53, was already serving a five-year jail sentence for theft, fraud and kidnapping concerning an 88-year-old widowed and retired teacher identified only as 'Robert', after police found bottles of Valium pills and methadone at the home of her victim in 2013.
Known in France as the 'Black Widow', Dagorn has been formally charged with "poisoning with premeditation" in a 2011 case and "murder" for a second death the same year.
Dagorn, who the French media describe as "pulpy", also faces charges of "administering harmful substances with premeditation to vulnerable people" in two other cases in 201 and 2012, while a possible fifth case is still being investigated, according to sources.
Poisoning dinners with valium and methadone
In all the cases, the woman targeted elderly men in their eighties named Robert – the name of her own father. After meeting them online or through a dating agency, Dagorn would seduce the men in a few minutes and very rapidly enter their lives.
After moving in with them and meeting their friends, she would also start cooking for the men. It is precisely during those dinners that she is accused of poisoning the food, waiting for the men to become dozy before making them sign documents such as acknowledgement of debt, wills or donations.
Then, Dagorn would disappear.
One of the alleged victims she had befriended in 2011 died at the age of 85.
Two other suspected victims, who live in Frejus and Nice on the Cote d'Azur, believe she tried to poison them.
The man from Frejus, who met Dagorn through a dating agency in 2012, claimed to have found valium in her luggage and his doctor said he found traces of poisoning in his body.
"I was heading for death without even realising it," he told a local newspaper.
Dagorn's lawyer, Cedric Huissoud, told AFP: "She denies all the accusations against her."
Huissoud added his client was a "fragile" individual who had been placed with a foster family at a young age. "She says she feels better with elderly people," he confirmed.