Home U.S Mother denies feeding painkillers and antidepressants to 10-year-old severely disabled adopted son

Mother denies feeding painkillers and antidepressants to 10-year-old severely disabled adopted son

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Mother denies ‘giving nature a helping hand’ by feeding painkillers and antidepressants to severely disabled son, 10, she adopted after he was found abandoned in a dustbin

  • Pembe Mehmetaliogullari, of Hove, East Sussex, is accused of attempted murder
  • It’s claimed she fed her 10-year-old son prescription medication to try to kill him
  • The boy who had epilepsy and cerebral palsy died in hospital in September 2018
  • His post-mortem found traces of painkillers and antidepressants in his system
  • Mrs Mehmetaliogullari denies attempted murder, saying she lived for her son

A mother has denied ‘giving nature a helping hand’ by feeding her severely disabled adopted son painkillers and antidepressants.

Pembe Mehmetaliogullari, from Hove, East Sussex, had adopted Mustafa when he was a baby after he was found abandoned in a dustbin.

The 47-year-old denies attempting to murder the boy, who was known as Musti and had complex needs that required round the clock care.

Prosecutors allege she gave him her prescription drugs to hasten the end of his life, something Mrs Mehmetaliogullari denies, claiming she lived for the boy.

Pembe Mehmetaliogullari, pictured here outside Lewes Crown Court, denies attempting to murder her adopted son by giving him prescription medication

Pembe Mehmetaliogullari, pictured here outside Lewes Crown Court, denies attempting to murder her adopted son by giving him prescription medication

A jury in Brighton heard Mrs Mehmetaliogullari raised the boy alone after her abusive husband left when Musti was diagnosed with epilepsy and cerebral palsy.

The boy, who weighed 28kg, also had severe scoliosis (curvature of the spine), could not swallow food and could only communicate by opening or closing his eyes.

Musti was admitted to Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton in September 2018 after his mother found him unresponsive at home and dialled 999. 

Despite the best efforts of medics the 10-year-old died three days later.

Mustafa, known as Musti, died at Royal Alexandra Children's Hospital in Brighton (pictured) in September 2018

Mustafa, known as Musti, died at Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton (pictured) in September 2018

Traces of painkillers and antidepressants prescribed to the mother were found in his system.

At her trial, which is being held in Lewes Crown Court, prosecutors alleged Mrs Mehmetaliogullari was worried medical staff would try to resuscitate him.

Cross-examining the mother, Miranda Moore QC, said: ‘You decided to give nature a helping hand.

The tearful mum said: ‘No, I didn’t. I wouldn’t do that to him. I couldn’t do that to him. I just wanted him to be with me.’

The court heard that in the days before her son was admitted to hospital respite care for Mrs Mehmetaliogullari had been cancelled, and that overnight help had been cut back.

A previous hearing was told how she often had to care for him up to 24 hours a day as a result of the lack of support, The Argus reports. 

When asked by Ms Moore if she was at the ‘end of her tether’, the mother responded: ‘No, I wasn’t.

Mrs Mehmetaliogullari, pictured here leaving Lewes Crown Court at an earlier hearing, claims she lived for her son

Mrs Mehmetaliogullari, pictured here leaving Lewes Crown Court at an earlier hearing, claims she lived for her son

‘He was what I lived for. He was the one thing in my life that made me happy.

‘I would do anything to have him here with me.’

Ms Moore asked her if she could offer any sensible alternative suggestion how the drugs got into Musti’s body.

In response, Mrs Mehmetaliogullari said: ‘No, I can’t. I really wish I could.’

Mrs Mehmetaliogullari, who has dual nationality with Turkey but has spent most of her life living in the UK, denies attempted murder and administering a noxious substance with intent.

The trial continues.

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