Author Fiori Giovanni has child homicide charge withdrawn

A motivational speaker and author whose baby daughter drowned in a bath has had a charge of child homicide against her withdrawn by prosecutors.

Fiori Giovanni, 36, was to stand trial over the death of her seven-month-old daughter, Illen Bellinger, in a Southbank apartment on July 18 last year. Ms Giovanni had pleaded not guilty to child homicide, an offence similar to manslaughter that only applies when the victim is younger than six years old.

Fiori Giovanni has had a charge of child homicide discontinued.Credit:Instagram

But in an administrative hearing in the Supreme Court on Tuesday, prosecutors confirmed they had discontinued the charge. Prosecutors did not outline the reasons behind the decision.

Judicial Registrar Tim Freeman told Ms Giovanni she was discharged and free to leave, and she replied, “Thank you, your honour.” She was on bail.

Prosecutors had previously alleged Ms Giovanni was criminally negligent in leaving two children unattended in a bath. Ambulance paramedics attended the apartment but Illen could not be revived and died.

Ms Giovanni was charged about two months after her daughter’s death and was this year committed to stand trial.

She describes herself as an entrepreneur, motivational speaker, media commentator, human rights activist and author and has appeared on television shows such as Studio 10.

She wrote her autobiography, Defy Your Destiny, which details her childhood in war-torn Eritrea and her experiences in an arranged marriage, as a child soldier and a refugee, and how she became a speaker, author and businesswoman in Australia.

Last year she wrote on Instagram: “It is with our deepest sorry and soul-wrenching heartbreak that we inform you of the death of our beautiful little angel.

“A shining star was sent to us to inspire, change and transform our lives in the short 7½ months we have the pleasure of being with her.”

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