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Sentence upheld for Pa. woman, 82, convicted of poisoning son's girlfriend with antifreeze


WILKES-BARRE, Pennsylvania — An elderly northeastern Pennsylvania woman behind bars for poisoning her son's girlfriend with antifreeze has lost an appeal of her conviction and sentence.

Eighty-two-year-old Helen Galli was sentenced in October to 5-1/2 to 12 years in prison after a jury determined she gave the victim fruit juice laced with antifreeze.

The Citizens' Voice ( said a Luzerne County judge upheld the sentence Thursday.

Galli's attorney had claimed the sentencing judge failed to consider his client's age and health problems and argued the jury convicted her based on hearsay.

The victim, Dawn Simyan, spent weeks in the hospital after the 2010 poisoning. Prosecutors said Galli didn't want Simyan getting between her and her son, who'd just signed a million-dollar natural gas lease.

Galli claimed Simyan poisoned herself for attention.

Information from: The Citizens' Voice,

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