Suicide bid by mother who killed her children

A woman who admitted suffocating her two children with a plastic bag in a Spanish hotel room tried to kill herself before she was arrested, police said yesterday.

Rebecca Smith, five, and her 11-month-old brother Daniel were found dead at the Hotel Miramar in Lloret de Mar, on the Costa Brava, on Tuesday.

Their mother, Lianne Smith, is believed to be on suicide watch in jail in Girona, Spain, and to be eating and drinking very little.

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A Girona police spokeswoman said: "She tried to commit suicide before police arrested her."

Smith, 43, was transferred to prison on Friday afternoon after a judge ruled that a case should be brought against her.

She is being held in isolation and British consular staff are holding regular meetings with her.

She is expected to decide soon whether her children's bodies should be repatriated or buried in Spain.

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The former Cumbria County Council employee confessed to the horrific killings in notes left at the crime scene, a court in Blanes, near Lloret de Mar, was told.

Judge Rafael Fernandez remanded her in custody.

The children died at about the time Smith's partner Martin Smith, 45, was extradited to Britain to face child sex charges.

Reports in Spain suggested they were killed on Monday night and that their mother spent the night in her hotel room with their bodies.

The court heard that Smith was worried the authorities would take her children away.

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The family went on the run in 2007 and had been living in Barcelona, where Smith was believed to have run a nursery.

A court document detailing Friday's hearing read: "Asked if she wanted to be present when the two bodies were removed, she declined as she said she had already said goodbye to her two children."

Results of psychological tests carried out on her were normal, the court document said.