It was not an isolated incident. So called acid attacks, in which victims have highly corrosive substances thrown or sprayed into their faces, have risen by 175% in the last two years in London.
Getting hold of this terrifying weapon couldn't be easier. Anyone over 18 can buy drain cleaner from a local hardware store that can be used to blind and disfigure another person for life.
Any corrosive substance can be used in an acid attack though the most common are sulphuric acid, nitric acid and ammonia.
Knives over acid
There are fears that an unintended consequence of this crackdown on knife crime is that gang members will instead be carrying acid, which is perfectly legal, as their weapon of choice, though this is not a claim that can be substantiated by evidence.