A GERMAN mother accused of killing five of her six children by drugging their breakfast and then drowning them in a bathtub has appeared in court.
Christiane K, 28, is facing trial over the murder of her children aged between one and eight, after feeding them with large doses of drugs in Solingen last September.
The mother is said to have murdered the children following a row with her ex-husband before trying to take her own life by leaping in front of a train.
Christiane did not speak at her trial at District Court in Wuppertal on Monday and is not expected to testify.
The defendant fed her children a cocktail of three drugs and "deliberately brought them into a state of twilight" so they would be more docile, the court heard.
She then took the children into the bathroom one-by-one and drowned them in the bathtub, prosecutors claim.
She is accused of killing the children because her ex-husband had found a new lover.
The German woman claims the children were murdered by a masked intruder, which the prosecution says there is no evidence of.
She faces a life sentence if found guilty.
Prosecutors have charged Christiance with "malicious murder" and say she took advantage of the children.
The family was known to social services but local authorities said there had been no sign the children were ever in danger.
According to broadcaster RTL, the children’s older brother, 11, watched his mother allegedly carry out the horrific killings.
She then took him on a train journey before she got off at Dusseldorf and threw herself on the tracks, reports say.
The 11-year-old was left on the train and continued to Mönchengladbach where his grandmother lived.
The dead children have been named as Luca, 8, and Timo, 6, Sophie, 3, Leonie 2, and Melina who was just one.
Solingen’s chief of police, Markus Röhrl, told news agency DPA at the time that the incident was “shocking” and that “nothing like this has ever happened to us in the Bergisch region.”
Local Mayor Tim Kurzbach also arrived to light a candle at the home where the children lost their lives before posting on Facebook.
He wrote: “I am shocked and deeply affected by the news that five dead children have been found in our city.
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“I mourn these five lives. And my sympathy goes to all people who are close to the children and the family.
“Today is a day on which we in Solingen are very sad because an act took place that struck us deeply.”
The man, Christiane's third husband, is the father of four of the six children.