Francois Hollande pardons woman who killed abusive husband

A French woman jailed for killer her abusive husband has been pardoned by French President Francois Hollande.

Here's what we know about Jacqueline Sauvage's case.

  • Shoots husband with rifle

Ms Sauvage's violent alcoholic husband, Norbert Marot, raped and beat her as well as her three daughters and son during their 47-year marriage.

A day after her son hanged himself in September 2012, Ms Sauvage shot her husband three times in the back with a rifle.

She was found guilty of murder and sentenced to 10 years in prison in October 2014.

Her conviction was upheld on appeal in December 2015 after state prosecutors rejected her plea of self-defence.

  • Outrage in France

The petition demanding Francois Holllande's help. Credit:

Her case sparked outrage in France, with more than 400,000 people signing a petition calling on Mr Hollande to intervene.

Her daughters - who throughout the trial described the terror and fear inflicted on them by their father - have long campaigned for their mother to be freed.

“We were afraid of him, he terrified us,” one told a court.

Another, who was raped at the age of 16, said her father's death was a "relief".

  • President comes to her aid

"Faced with exceptional human circumstances, the President of the Republic wished to enable Ms Sauvage to be reunited with her family as quickly as possible," a statement from Mr Hollande's office said.

The move does not quash her conviction but it does reduce the 69-year-old's sentence and allows her to potentially leave in mid-April.

The gesture came two days after the president met Ms Sauvage's three daughters for the first time.

  • Has Hollande used his presidential pardon before?

French President Francois Hollande. Credit: Reuters

Yes, once before.

In 2013 he granted a sentence reduction to allow Philippe El Shennawy, then France's longest-serving prisoner, to be freed on parole after 38 yearsin jail.