1. ITV Report

Lianne Smith sentenced to 30 years in prison

Lianne Smith has been sentenced to 30 years for murdering her two children Photo: ITV Central News

A woman who murdered her two children in a Spanish hotel room has been sentenced to 30 years in prison.

Lianne Smith, 45, had admitted smothering 11-month-old Daniel and five-year-old Rebecca with a plastic bag at Mirmar Hotel in Loret de Mar on the Costa Brava in May 2010.

She has been jailed 15 years for each of the murders.

Last month, Smith was found criminally responsible for the deaths.

Her defence had argued that she should be acquitted because of her mental state due to the arrest days earlier of her partner Martin Smith on child sex abuse charges.

The judge also dismissed the defence's claim that Smith had been suffering "insurmountable fear" when she murdered her children because she feared British social services would take them away from her.

The killings took place shortly after Smith's partner, Martin Smith, was arrested in Barcelona by Spanish police acting on a European Arrest Warrant.

The family had been living in Spain since 2007 after fleeing from the their home at Lichfield in Staffordshire, because Smith's eldest daughter by her first husband had accused Mr Smith of sexually abusing her.

After her partner was deported to the UK, Smith thought British social services had travelled to Spain to take her children away from her.

In December 2010, Martin Smith was found guilty at Manchester Crown Court of using hypnotism, bullying and violence to groom and sexually abuse Smith's eldest daughter, Sarah Richardson, who has waived her right to anonymity.

Last January, he was found hanged in his cell at Strangeways Prison in Manchester.

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