Spanish retirement home guard gets 127-year
sentence for murders
June 21, 2013
A security guard at a Spanish retirement home was
sentenced to 127 years in prison Friday for killing 11 elderly
residents, three of whom he forced to drink bleach.
Joan Vila Dilme, dubbed "the angel of death," was
found guilty of the crimes on June 12 by a unanimous jury decision at
a court hearing in the northeastern town of Girona in Spain's
northeastern Catalonia region.
The court on Friday sentenced Dilme to 127 years
behind bars but specified that under Spanish law he can serve a
maximum of 40 years in jail.
The 47-year-old defendant, employed at the La
Caritat home in Olot in Catalonia, was arrested in October 2010 after
the death of an 85-year-old woman in a local hospital.
He later confessed to her murder, saying he had
made her drink bleach, along with the killings of two other elderly
people, which he said were carried out in order to "end their
Eight other murders, committed between August 2009
and October 2010, later came to light, with the victims given
overdoses of insulin or various fatal pharmaceutical cocktails in a
case that has stirred high emotions in the country.
Prosecutors had asked for a 194-year jail term.
The defense lawyer said his client suffered mental
problems but the jury found no extenuating circumstances.
Spain's 'angel of death' found guilty in 11
nursing home killings
By Anne Sewell - DigitalJournal.com
June 12, 2013
Girona - Joan Vila Dilme, a security guard at a
Spanish retirement home, has been found guilty of the killing of
eleven elderly residents, which, according to him, was to "end their
suffering." Prosecutors are looking at a 194-year sentence for his
Dilme, 45, worked at the La Caritat home in Olot in
the Catalunya region of Spain. He was arrested in October 2010 after
the death of an 85-year-old woman in a local hospital.
He later confessed to her murder, saying that he
forced her to drink bleach, and also confessed to the killings of two
other elderly people. However, these were not isolated incidents, as
he was found to have killed a total of eleven elderly residents of the
According to Skynews he forced three of the elderly
residents to drink bleach, but with the eight other murders, which
occurred between August 2009 and October 2010, Dilme gave the victims
overdoses of insulin or other fatal pharmaceutical cocktails to "end
Dubbed "the angel of death," Dilme was found guilty
by a unanimous jury decision at a court hearing in Girona, Spain.
According to Dilme's defense lawyer, his client
suffered mental problems. However, the jury found no extenuating
The case has stirred high emotions in the country
and prosecutors are seeking a 194-year jail term. Sentencing will take
Olot care-home killer found guilty of 11 murders
Rebeca Carranco - Elpais.com
June 11, 2013
A jury in Girona on Tuesday handed down 11 guilty
verdicts against a former worker at a residential care home who was
charged with murdering elderly patients by forcing them to drink toxic
substances such as bleach.
Joan Vila, who is known as the “porter of Olot,”
was not only aware of what he was doing but had also carefully covered
up the murders of his 11 victims, prosecutor Enrique Barata told
jurors. The crimes have become known as the worst serial killing spree
in Spain in recent decades.
The 47-year-old Vila, who at first faked that he
was suffering from mental illness, confessed to the killings. At the
beginning of his 15-day trial, Olot explained that he killed the
patients “to ease their sufferings.”
But last Friday he said: “I just want to say that I
am sorry for what I did and for allowing it to come to this extreme; I
don’t want to say anything else.”
Vila worked for five years at the La Caritat
convalescent home in Olot, Girona, where he committed his crimes.
Investigators only became suspicious when an 85-year-old woman,
Paquita Gironès, was transferred to hospital in agony after Vila had
given her an acid substance to drink.
According to his co-workers, Vila and the woman
hated each other.
Prosecutors are asking for a 194-year sentence for
Vila, while his defense lawyers, who argued their client was mentally
ill, have asked for a 20-year probationary period.
Olot care-home killer is “a woman trapped in a
By Antia Castedo and Rebeca Carranco - Elpais.com
June 5, 2013
When police arrested Joan Vila Dilmé in 2010, he
broke down as he confessed to killing 11 elderly residents at a care
home in Olot, Girona province. What subsequently emerged was a macabre
case of sustained abuse that surprised those who knew Vila. Many of
them have given evidence in the trial of the “Porter of Olot” three
What residents of the small town did not know about
Vila is what defense lawyers plan to use in their case: “He feels like
a woman trapped in a man’s body,” said psychologists Miguel Soria and
Lluis Borrás after Vila revealed his homosexuality and admitted to
“wearing my mother’s heels and clothes around the house when I was
young.” Vila also said he suffers from manic depression and has been
examined by psychiatrists while in custody.
On the day of his arrest, October 18, Vila admitted
killing Paquita Gironés, 85, by forcing her to drink a descaling agent
in her room at La Caritat nursing home. She was his final victim: the
day before his arrest, María Dolors Costa went to visit her aunt and
found her “left cheek black and burned; her eyes wide, black and
burned,” she told the court on Monday. When a doctor asked if she
wanted her aunt sedated, she replied: “morphine.”
“I shook his hand and thanked him. It was as though
I was thanking him for what he had done,” Costa said. The majority of
the victims’ families recall how Vila, 47, had been gentle and caring
with his charges and consoled their families.
Vila told police that he had killed his first eight
victims with either overdoses of insulin or a lethal cocktail of
psychotropic drugs. The final three suffered agonizing deaths after
they were forced to drink bleach or other corrosive fluids. However,
it was not until Gironés was taken to Sant Jaume hospital in Girona
that suspicions were aroused. “It looked like there had been a fight,”
said Doctor Josefina Felisart, who examined her, finding burns on her
chest and face. The doctor did not sign off the death as resulting
from natural causes.
But the resident doctor at La Caritat, María Elena
Trasserras, certified that seven of Vila’s victims had died from
natural causes, as in the case of Montserrat Canalias, 96. “I didn’t
have a car to get there,” Trasserras testified on Wednesday to explain
why the body was not examined. She recorded “multi-organ failure” in
her report. Vila confessed three months after her death that he had
administered a lethal dose of barbiturates.
Trasserras, who has not been charged with a crime,
said the process for certifying deaths at La Caritat was simply to
check for vital signs and revise their medical records. “A young
person dying suddenly might be surprising but in the elderly it is
expected,” she told the court. Not even in the case of 80-year-old
Carmen Vilanova, her sister-in-law’s grandmother, who had an apparent
thrombosis on her inner thigh, did the doctor investigate further.
“Natural causes,” was again noted on Vilanova’s records.
Vilanova’s husband, Vila’s next-door neighbor, also
appeared this week as a witness. “He killed her,” he said. “Carme
didn’t want to die. It’s a crime as far as I’m concerned.” The trial
Care home worker admits to murdering 11 patients
using bleach and drugs 'to end their suffering'
December 1, 2010
A worker at a care home in northern Spain has
admitted to killing 11 residents over a period of 14 months – eight
more than had originally been thought.
Joan Vila was arrested in October when he said that
he had killed three of the residents ' to end their suffering' – but
confessed to murdering eight more in court yesterday.
The 45-year-old said that he used bleach to poison
the victims, or gave them an overdose of insulin or drugs at the La
Caritat home in the town of Olot.
Mr Vila’s confession came 10 days after a judge
ordered the eight bodies exhumed as part of an investigation into
suspicious deaths at the home.
The police were only alerted last month when
doctors reported finding burns to the mouth and throat of an
85-year-old woman, who died.
The worker then confessed he had murdered the woman
and two other patients by forcing them to drink bleach.
And yesterday Mr Vila told a judge he had killed
another six with a mix of drugs and two from an overdose of insulin,
local paper Efe reported.
The newspaper El Periodico quoted Mr Vila's lawyer,
Carles Monguilod, as saying that the first killing was carried out in
August 2009, another later that year and the other nine this year.
Mr Vila, who worked weekends at the home, is
currently being held in the psychiatric ward of a prison.
Mr Monguilod said his client acted out of
‘compassion... because they were suffering and he wanted to give them
Most of the patients were said to have been
suffering terminal illnesses, including Alzheimer's, and had fevers or