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‘Pure evil’ – acid attacker Berlinah Wallace jailed for at least 12 years

She threw sulphuric acid over Mark van Dongen as he slept

A fashion student who poured sulphuric acid over her former partner’s face after he left her for another woman has been jailed for at least 12 years.

Berlinah Wallace, 48, purchased a bottle of 98% concentration sulphuric acid and viewed 82 websites about it – including post-mortem images – after Mark van Dongen said their relationship was over.

Wallace threw the liquid over the engineer as he slept in bed at her flat in Westbury Park, Bristol, in September 2015, and laughed as she told him: “If I can’t have you, no-one else can.”

It was an act of pure evil Mrs Justice Nicola Davies

The 29-year-old was left in a coma for four months, suffered extensive burns to his body, was left blind in one eye, paralysed from the neck down and had to have his lower left leg amputated. He died by euthanasia at a hospital in Belgium on January 2 2017.

Mrs Justice Nicola Davies, who jailed Wallace for life with a minimum term of 12 years at Bristol Crown Court on Wednesday, told the South African: “Your intention was to burn, disfigure and disable Mark van Dongen so that he would not be attractive to any other woman.

“It was an act of pure evil.”

Wallace was acquitted of murder but convicted of throwing a corrosive substance with intent following a four-week trial.

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