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Caustic soda attack woman jailed

A jealous wife who threw caustic soda in to the face of a waitress who was working at her husband's restaurant has been jailed for nine years.

Sau Lin-Hin, 48, mixed the toxic substance with water and threw it on to 22-year-old Zhijian Zhang, leaving her disfigured, because she wanted to make her less attractive, Wessex Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said.

Lin-Hin, from Ryde, Isle of Wight, was jailed at Portsmouth Crown Court today for causing grievous bodily harm to Miss Zhang, who was also known as Jackie.

Dale Sheehan, senior crown prosecutor for CPS Wessex, said Miss Zhang was working in Lin-Hin's husband's restaurant in Sandown, Isle of Wight, when the offence took place on June 4.

He said: "A 5% concentration of caustic soda causes serious injuries; the concentration that Sau Lin-Hin used was one of 33%.

"This means that the level of concentration was vicious, sticking to the skin or any surface in which it came into contact.

"It was extremely corrosive."

Miss Zhang suffered extensive injuries to her right arm, shoulder, the right side of her chest and the right side of the face, Mr Sheehan said.

He went on: "Zhijian Zhang was very lucky not to lose her sight.

"Sau Lin-Hin in her interview said that she did not want to cause serious harm, this is a defence that we did not accept.

"It was clear that she had intended to cause serious harm as she had prepared the mixture, which was highly concentrated, causing immediate injuries to Zhijian Zhang.

"Not only was Zhijian Zhang left with the trauma of the attack, but Sau Lin-Hin has scarred her for life."

In her victim personal statement, Miss Zhang described the devastating effects on her life and her future, Mr Sheehan said.

"She said that she had been disfigured even on parts of her body not directly affected by burns because surgeons used other parts of her body for skin grafts," he explained.

"She is devastated as she cannot be exposed to sunshine without wearing lots of sunscreen, has to wear lots of bandages and cannot have a wash without the help of her sister.

"She has lost her job, is currently dependent on her family and is very worried that she might not be able to work again or find love because of her scars.

"By pleading guilty, Sau Lin-Hin has spared Zhijian Zhang to relive the terrible moments of the attacks at a trial.

"We hope that with this sentence Zhijian Zhang will be able to move on with her life, our thoughts at this instant are with her."

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