A mother whose face was hideously deformed by acid sprayed by her married lover appeared in court today and accused him of 'turning me into a monster'.
Speaking on the first day of Richard Remes's trial for attempted murder in Belgium, Patricia Lefranc said she was 'determined to look him in the eye and show the jury what he has done to me'.
The 48-year-old, who underwent 86 operations following the attack, added: 'I hope to convince the court that he did indeed want to murder me.'
Remes, 57, is said to have planned the sulphuric acid attack after Ms Lefranc ended their relationship just over two years ago.
Ms Lefranc told Brussels Assizes that December 1, 2009 was the day Remes 'finally destroyed my life.'
She said he was waiting for her as she emerged from a lift in the Brussels suburb of Molenbeek-Saint-Jean.
He sprayed the sulphuric acid, once referred to as 'oil of vitriol' by medieval European alchemists, all over her head and upper body, she told the court.
She said she was convinced she would die, but neighbours in a nearby building heard her screams and managed to get her to the burns unit of a nearby hospital, where she lay in a coma for three months.
Ms Lefranc said: 'I hope Remes is convicted of attempted murder, and not just for assault and battery with torture. He did not just want to hurt me, he wanted me out of the way. I just hope that I get to tell the court what I experienced, and how it hurt.
'I would also appeal to his wife. She paints me as a manipulator who hooked her husband. I think that's an insult - a dagger in my back.
'He made the first step in starting a relationship, and I had to bring it to a close. Let's reverse the roles, but don't tell me how seriously he should be punished.
'I leave that to the court, but while working out the punishment don't lose sight of the fact that he condemned me to pain, both physical and psychological, for life.'
Ms Lefranc said her son’s school friends now regularly mock her appearance, adding: 'Remes has also ruined my life as a woman. Who once to deal with the monster that he made me?