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Accused triple murderer Erin Patterson has pleaded not guilty to eight charges

The trial of triple murderer Erin Patterson will be expedited after she pleaded not guilty to eight charges.

The 49-year-old was confronted at Latrobe Valley Magistrates Court in Morewell, Victoria, via video link from prison on Tuesday, with her hair tied back, wearing a blue jumper and glasses.

She is accused of killing her former in-laws, Don and Gail Patterson, both 70, and Gail’s sister Heather Wilkinson, 66.

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All three died in hospital days after consuming an allegedly fatal mushroom meal at Patterson’s home in Leongatha, South Gippsland, on July 29, 2023.

She is also accused of the attempted murder of her ex-husband Simon on separate occasions dating back to 2021, and the attempted murder of Wilkinson’s husband Ian, 68, over lunch.

Patterson pleaded not guilty Tuesday to all eight charges, including three murders and five attempted murders.

She was taken into custody to stand trial in the High Court in Melbourne, after choosing no bond, speeding up the judicial process.

Accused mushroom killer Erin Patterson has formally pleaded not guilty to murder.
Accused mushroom killer Erin Patterson has formally pleaded not guilty to murder. Credit: 7NEWS
Don and Gail Patterson and Heather Wilkinson died in hospital after Erin Patterson cooked them a beef wellington.
Don and Gail Patterson and Heather Wilkinson died in hospital after Erin Patterson cooked them a beef wellington. Credit: MONKEY

Patterson’s lawyer had previously requested her next hearing be held in Morewell, closer to her regional Victorian home in Leongatha.

Magistrate Tim Walsh said the regional magistrates’ court would not be able to accommodate Patterson’s hearing until next year because it serves six courts in one location.

β€œIt is not just a matter of principle, and there are strong reasons why the commitment should take place in the local community of Patterson,” Patterson’s barrister Colin Mandy SC said at the time.

Her case is scheduled for a hearing at the Supreme Court on May 23.