Discovery has announced the commission of The Baby Killer Conspiracy to add to its box set true crime portfolio. The 2×60 documentary delves into the story of women in Britain and Australia convicted of killing more than one of their infants. Produced by Caravan, the series will air on discovery+ internationally later this year.
The Baby Killer Conspiracy tells the story of three mothers who were given life sentences based on one man’s killer statistic. Now one of these women is dead, one is free and one is still in prison.
In 1998, Professor Sir Roy Meadows stated that unless proven otherwise, the chances of 3 babies from the same mother dying of natural causes were 1 in 73 million. After British solicitor Sally Clark suffered the devastating loss of her second baby, Meadows’ Law was used to arrest and convict her of murdering both of her children. In 2002, supermarket worker Angela Cannings was also jailed after the death of her third child. In what can only be described as a modern-day witch hunt, Meadows’ Law set a default position that multiple infant deaths in one family is so rare that it had to be murder, and was used to arrest grieving mothers across the world and presented in Australia’s most notorious baby killer trial, that of Kathleen Folbigg.
Meadows’ evidence was eventually discredited and Sally Clark was freed. Although she never got her life back, her release contributed to three other British mothers having their convictions overturned. However, many women are still trapped in the same nightmare, living their loss and their lives behind the bars.
Through conversations with those close to the wrongly accused mothers, we follow Sally Clark’s story of getting her sentence and Meadows’ theory overturned. The series will also unravel the true stories of those still fighting for freedom from prison cells, with a focus on the appeal of Kathleen Folbigg who has been dubbed ‘Australia’s deadliest female serial-killer’ and has so far spent 18 years in prison after being convicted of killing her four babies.
Clare Laycock, SVP Planning & Insights, Head of Entertainment at Discovery, said: “The Baby Killer Conspiracy is a strong addition to the discovery+ line-up. An important and gripping documentary series that confronts the devastating miscarriages of justice still impacting women today.”
Charlotte Reid, VP Commissioning, Entertainment Brands, added: “Caravan’s powerful films bring our viewers closer to the disturbing stories of mothers who suffered the very worst loss, of their children, then of their freedom and reputation, due to misinterpreted maths, and a campaign against logic and cot death.”
Dinah Lord , MD Caravan said: “Women all over the world have suffered appalling miscarriages of justice which have devastated their lives. While some have seen their convictions overturned, others continue to be incarcerated. We are honoured to be working with Discovery on this series which we hope will help bring freedom to the victims and prevent further tragedies”.
The series was ordered by Discovery’s Clare Laycock, commissioned by Charlotte Reid and executive produced by Steven Fullagar. At Caravan, Dinah Law is the executive producer and John Holsworth the Director. It was produced for discovery+ internationally.