Northern Italy: 31-stone killer who stabbed girlfriend to death released from jail

Photo courtesy of Daily Mail UK

A 31-stone Italian killer who fatally stabbed his girlfriend in 2017 after a dispute about his eating habits has been released from jail as prison could not provide him with an adequate low-calorie diet.

The Italian killer, 35 year old Biella-born Dimitri Fricano murdered his 28 year old girlfriend Erika Preti during a holiday to Sardinia. Preti was stabbed 57 times after reprimanding Fricano for making the hotel bed messy after a snack session.

In 2019, Fricano weighed in at approximately 117 kilogrammes (18.5 stones). He ballooned to nearly 200 kilogrammes after a year of his 30-year prison sentence for murder. Turin Surveillance Court has released the Italian killer as the court judged that Fricano cannot follow the prison regime and that he could not stick to a low-fat diet whilst in jail. Instead, the killer will complete his murder sentence under house arrest.

The Italian killer was incarcerated for only 12 months due to trial delays caused by the Covid pandemic. He was convicted last year. It was reported that Fricano had significant difficulty getting about the prison establishment. He needed the help of crutches or a wheelchair to aid his mobility.

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The killer said that his girlfriend, Preti, had struck him with a paperweight to which he reacted by grabbing a knife and repeatedly stabbing her multiple times. At first, the Italian killer did not admit to his crime and claimed that robbers had killed Preti. However, in the end, Fricano confessed to the murder.

“She insulted me for the bread and then hit me in the head. So, I killed her.”

Reasons for release

Fricano’s lawyers claimed that the Italian killer has a combination of conditions, namely personality disorder, anxiety-depressive bulimia syndrome, and sleep apnoea. The killer’s doctors had reported that Fricano is at elevated risk of cardiovascular disease and he must follow a strict diet which is unavailable at the prison, reported Daily Mail UK.

The court’s decision to release the Italian killer has brought on anger for Preti’s family. The murder victim’s father Fabrizio Preti spoke to Corriere della Sera, the Italian newspaper:

“The house arrest for Dimitri? It’s a shameful decision. No one will give me back my little girl. But for us, the pain is still too strong for him to be released so soon.

“Time, they say, heals wounds, but not those of two parents who has had a daughter taken away from them.

“When some friends told me, after reading it online, that Dimitri had been placed under house arrest, it was like a wound was torn open again. It was like a knife to the heart.”

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Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Born in Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in September 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid has also spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK where she studied high school. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.