Mushrooms kill 3 in Australia after woman makes lethal dish for parents-in-law, guests

She reportedly said that she unknowingly bought the deadly mushrooms from a grocery store and that the poisonings were accidental

By AFP

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Published: Sun 24 Sep 2023, 8:03 AM

An Australian man who unwittingly ate the same dish containing deadly mushrooms that killed three other diners has been released from hospital, his family said.

Nearly two months after eating a beef Wellington dish, which police believe contained "death cap" mushrooms, during a family lunch, Ian Wilkinson left the hospital, relatives said in a statement late Saturday.

Each lethal mushroom contains enough poison to kill a healthy adult, experts say.

Despite having fallen gravely ill after eating the contaminated meal, Wilkinson has made "significant progress in his recovery" and was discharged Friday, his family said.

"This milestone marks a moment of immense relief and gratitude for Ian and the entire Wilkinson family."

Other diners -- Wilkinson's wife Heather, as well as married couple Don and Gail Patterson -- all died after also experiencing food poisoning symptoms.

The lethal mushroom mystery gripped Australia after Erin Patterson cooked and served the beef Wellington for her estranged parents-in-law, Don and Gail, as well as the Wilkinson couple, on July 29.

Erin Patterson has been named as a suspect because she appeared to remain in good health despite her four guests falling gravely ill.

She was married to Don and Gail's son Simon, but the couple had been living separately for some time.

She has not been charged and police have provided no evidence of wrongdoing.

Erin Patterson has reportedly said that she unknowingly bought the deadly mushrooms from a grocery store and that the poisonings were accidental.

Death cap mushrooms sprout freely throughout wet, warm parts of Australia and are easily mistaken for edible varieties.

They reportedly taste sweeter than other types of mushrooms but possess potent toxins that slowly poison the liver and kidneys.

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