Thursday, January 2, 2014

Sophie Safarine, Triple Black Widow and Husband-Poisoner for Hire – Russia 1927


Here are two slightly different versions of the same story. There are over 50 different locations with the name Navoija in Russia. An Italian book on serial killers, published in 2011, identifies the village as Novaja Laloga.

Novaja Ladoga (Russian: Но́вая Ла́дога) is a town in Volkhovsky District of Leningrad Oblast, Russia, located at the point where the Volkhov River flows into Lake Ladoga, 140 kilometers (87 mi) east of St. Petersburg.

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FULL TEXT (Article 1 of 2): London, September. 28. – Russian authorities were surprised to discover that the village of Navoija is inhabited only by widows and children, says the Paris correspondent of "The Evening News." It was found that all the husbands to the number of 58 were murdered. The women confessed to having poisoned the men when they were intoxicated during a village festival after the war when the men had returned and disturbed the untroubled lives of the wives. Sophie Safarine, the ringleader, stated that she had committed 30 murders. She declared that she developed a hatred to men owing to the brutality of her first husband whom she killed. She dealt similarly with her second and third husbands.

[“Husbands Slain - Russian Women Confess - Fifty-eight Murders,” The News (Adelaide, Australia), Sep. 29, 1927, p. 7]

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FULL TEXT (Article 2 of 2): Paris, September. 28. – The Russian authorities have been surprised to discover the village of Navoia is inhabited only by widows. After investigations they discovered that all the husbands in the village, numbering 58, had been murdered. The women confessed to poisoning them when they were intoxicated during a village festival, after the War, when the men returned and disturbed their wives’ untroubled lives.

The ring-leader, Sophie Safarine, stated that she committed thirty murders. She says she developed androphobia owing to the brutality of her first husband whom she killed in addition to the second and third husbands.

[“Women With A Grievance. - 58 Husbands Killed.” The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser, Oct. 15, 1927, p. 6]

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Sophie Safarine – She was a killer with good knowledge of the poison who, in the first half of the twentieth century, killed her three husbands; then moved to the village of Novay Laloga, where she began to incite the local women to poison their husbands while they were drunk. After her arrest she confessed to having killed the men because of her hatred of men, having developed that hatred after because one of her three husbands, a violent man, had regularly beaten her. [translated from Italian Wikipedia, listing as its source: Vincenzo Maria Mastronardi, Ruben De Luca, I Serial killer, 2011, Newton Compton editori s.r.l., Roma, unpaginated]

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For more than two dozen similar cases, dating from 1658 to 2011, see the summary list with links see: The Husband-Killing Syndicates

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For links to other cases of woman who murdered 2 or more husbands (or paramours), see Black Widow Serial Killers.

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