Bianca Louise French to face trial accused of setting partner on fire

Newcastle courthouse. A WOMAN accused of pouring petrol on her partner and then setting him alight during a dispute at Hamilton South will face a trial in Newcastle District Court next year.

Bianca Louise French, 29, of Triumph Way, appeared in Newcastle Local Court this week, where she pleaded not guilty to a charge of burn or maim person by intentional explosion.

Ms French’s on again, off again partner, Paul Green, was in a coma for four days after hesuffered“serious and life-threatening injuries” and burns to more than 20 per cent of his body when he wasset on fireon May 11 this year.

The pair had been arguing after Ms French had accused Mr Green of cheating on her.

During the argument, she allegedly grabbed a jerry can full of petrol and swung it at him about 8am.

The fuel splashed onto the right side of his face and upper body before the petrol, and Mr Green, caught fire.

Mr Green ran outside and removed his clothes before a neighbour put him in a cold shower until ambulance paramedics arrived.

He was taken to John Hunter Hospital where he went into a coma for four days.

Mr Green was then transferred for further treatment at the Burns Unit atRoyal North Shore Hospital.

He was assessed as having burns to his face, neck, ear, hands, chest and stomach which required skin grafts.

Ms French gave an interview with police, during which she admitted to lighting Mr Green on fire after seeing the fuel splash on him.

“I wanted to kill the c— and me”, she said during the interview.

Ms French claims the pair had argued and“tussled” when Mr Green pushed her through the open front door and she landed on the concrete.

She says she then saw the jerry can she used to fill her lawnmower.

She said she picked the jerry can up and swung it at Mr Green.

Ms French claims she was not aware the lid of the jerry can was off, and had only intended to hit Mr Green with the outside of the can.

However, she says fuel spilledonto both her and Mr Green before the pair kept struggling.

She then saw a lighter lying on the ground.

Ms French says she picked up the lighter, stood up and saw Mr Green standing two metres away with his back to her.She says she then extended her arm and lit the lighter, igniting the fuel.

Ms French will face trial in Newcastle District Court next year.