French serial killer who murdered a British student in coma and 'on verge of death'

French serial killer who murdered a British student in coma and 'on verge of death'

Michel Fourniret, 79, known as the ‘Beast of the Ardennes’ was admitted to a secure unit at the Pitié Salpêtrière in Paris on Saturday and has slipped into a coma.

A French serial killer who murdered a British student has slipped into a coma and is on the verge of death, it has emerged.

Michel Fourniret, 79, known as the ‘Beast of the Ardennes’ was rushed to a secure unit at the Pitié Salpêtrière in Paris on Saturday ‘suffering from respiratory problems.

‘He is suffering with heart problems and mental degeneration has been placed in a coma.

Doctors consider he cannot be resuscitated,’ a source told Le Parisien newspaper.

Fourniret has admitted kidnapping, raping and murdering nine girls and young women over a 14-year period from 1987, and is thought to be behind up to 21 more killings.

Michel Fourniret murdered nine girls and young women.

They include 20-year-old Leeds University language student Joanna Parrish who was killed in Burgundy countryside in eastern France in May 1990.

In 2018, Fourniret told examining magistrates that he ended the lives of both Joanna and Marie-Ange Domece, a 19-year-old with a mental disability who disappeared in 1988.

Joanna’s body was found naked in the River Yonne in Auxerre, the day after she was reported missing.

Fourniret was the prime suspect in Joanna’s case for years and was finally arrested in 2005 with his wife Monique Olivier in connection with the death.

Olivier was also jailed for complicity after it was revealed she would pick up victims for him as she drove in their car around the wooden Ardennes area with their baby son in the backseat.

Last year, analysts found forensic traces of two other Fourniret victims - nine-year-old Estelle Mouzin and 18-year-old Céline Saison - on a mattress belonging to the murderer’s sister.

Joanna Parrish from Newham on Severn, near Gloucester.

Then advanced testing led to links with 12 other people, whose identifies could be revealed thanks to advanced testing.

Corinne Herrmann, a barrister representing presumed victims, said at the time: 'We want the DNA of all victims and disappeared girls that we represent to be compared with those found on the mattress, and with all evidence under seal seized at Michel Fourniret's home.

Ms. Herrmann added: 'It is inconceivable that Fourniret did not kill other victims.'

Fourniret was in the high-security Fresnes prison in Paris until being rushed to the Pitié Salpêtrière.

Le Parisien said he ‘had already been hospitalized in an emergency on several occasions.’

Didier Seban, another lawyer for the families of his victims, said: ‘His condition and his memory have been deteriorating for several months and we suspect that he will never be tried’ for many of his crimes.

Mr. Seban added: ‘This situation is obviously hard to live with for the families who will be deprived of the main accused in the event of a trial.’

Monique Olivier has told a fellow prisoner her ex-husband’s victims ‘greatly exceeded 30’, according to investigating sources who have monitored her in Rennes prison.

Genetic traces have linked him with at least 21 unsolved cases of murders or disappearances across France.

Fourniret was convicted of seven murders in May 2008, and sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole.

Olivier, his ex-wife, was given life with a minimum term of 28 years in prison, for complicity in multiple murders.
French serial killer who murdered a British student in coma and 'on verge of death'
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