A wife who shot her partner and cut up his body has been freed after a court heard how he vowed to make her daughter and granddaughter prostitutes.
Mafalda Secreto, 65, admitted shooting brutal Jose Luis Arena in the face after repeated violence and intimidation.
During their relationship, he had forced her to sleep with men for money and had even drugged her so she would lose her respectable job as a dressmaker.
But – the 1st Criminal Oral Tribunal of Pergamino, Buenos Aires, Argentina heard – she snapped when he threatened to do the same to her daughter and her child.
After shooting the 60-year-old drug dealer in the jaw, she hacked off his legs and an arm and hid the body parts in her shed.
Secreto begged her brother for help to hide the body, but he called police, who arrested her for the killing in June 2019.
But on Monday (4th June), the court ruled Secreto had acted in self-defence as a victim of gender-based violence and declared her not guilty.
Prosecutors had demanded a prison sentence of 18 years, even taking into account the mitigating circumstances.
Secreto – from Colon, Buenos Aires – had met Arena online while he was doing time for flogging bootleg tarmac.
The court heard how, after they embarked on a relationship, he subjected her to daily violence, threats and harassment.
But she never left her partner or reported him to the police because of his powerful links to the drug trade and hear fear of his contacts.
It was only when he threatened her family that she waited for him to go to bed, grabbed one of his guns and shot him in the head, killing him instantly.