Convicted body modifier called ‘monster’
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Convicted body modifier called ‘monster’

A mother whose daughter died after a body modifier implanted a silicone snowflake in her hand told him she truly believed there was a monster from the street.

In November, Judge Helen Syme found Brendan Leigh Russell, 41, guilty of manslaughter for deterring a woman from seeking medical attention after her implanted hand became infected.

During Russell’s NSW District Court hearing on Wednesday, her mother said she missed her daughter “with every breath”.

“My daughter is dead, the mother (of a child) is over, and yet Brendan Russell has not shown the slightest remorse and has not accepted any responsibility.

“If (she) were here, she would say, ‘I trusted him’.

“I can’t begin to describe the pain we all feel daily. I can’t hold my baby ever again.”

Russell, considered a “god” by the 30-year-old, put the snowflake in her hand in his Central Coast salon on March 20, 2017.

After a second procedure on April 10, she died of sepsis due to the infection two days later.

“I wanted to say there are no winners here, but there are because I believe there is a monster being taken off the streets today,” her mother said.

He was also found guilty of intentionally causing grievous bodily harm by performing a quasi-medical and “clearly dangerous” tummy tuck or “tummy tuck” on a 38-year-old woman in November 2016.

That woman said Wednesday that the public and extremely difficult process caused a range of emotions: pain, anger, sadness, and disbelief.

“Brendan, you were not qualified to perform that procedure on me; you did not have a duty of care and no responsibility afterward,” she said, adding that her scars were a constant reminder of her trauma.

“You didn’t care what could have happened to me.

“My sons could have lost their mother, but you didn’t care.

“I wish I could turn back time, I wish our paths never crossed, and I hadn’t put my trust in you as a so-called professional and so-called friend.”

He was also found guilty of female genital mutilation in Newcastle in January 2015 after using a branding iron in a procedure that prevented the woman from using tampons or wearing underwear without discomfort.

Defense attorney Mark Tedeschi QC argued that consent was a very important feature for the judge.

“As a matter of sheer implacable logic, the fact that all three victims agreed to the procedures that were performed, not only the basic procedure but the actual scope of the procedure.”

He also addressed the legislation against female body modification as eradicating the “abhorrent and abominable practices being done on defenseless children.”

“It is not adopted for mature women who are fully aware of their sexuality and want to change the appearance of their genitals.”

He said that the Health Care Complaints Committee had ensured he would never practice tattoos, piercings, body modifications, or art again.

Russell is awaiting his sentence later from prison after failing to secure bail.