The assistant to a fake beauty doctor who injected the lips of a customer without medical knowledge in Vienna was sentenced to a conditional prison sentence of 15 months at the Vienna Criminal Court on Tuesday. The verdict for fraud and grievous bodily harm is already final. Her boss, who was also accused, stayed away from the trial, and the 25-year-old is now being sought by an arrest warrant.
The 22-year-old already confessed in full at the start of the process last Friday. She thought the doctor was real, her “Russian Lips Technique”, offered on Instagram, was very popular with the young women. When she got the job at Christmas 2020, she was so excited that she started working straight away over the holidays. The 22-year-old had to do disinfection work and manage the appointments.
However, when the doctor was absent due to illness one day, she was asked to inject the lips of a customer in February 2021. “She was young and naive, so she did that,” said defense attorney Sascha Flatz. The 22-year-old was afraid of losing her job. She was reassured by the doctor that it was just “a refresher”. The 27-year-old customer was initially confused that the doctor from the first appointment was not doing the second treatment. “She said I needn’t be afraid that she was also a doctor,” said the young woman on the witness stand, describing the conversation with the assistant. When judge Julia Matiasch asked whether it wasn’t unusual for her that the doctor was so young, the 27-year-old said: “I once worked in a pharmacy, and very young doctors always came in there and had prescriptions Redeemed.”
So the 22-year-old got an already opened ampoule with hyaluron, took a new needle and injected the material into the lips of the 27-year-old, who came from Germany especially for this purpose. “After that I had pain and a feeling of tension. And I soon felt the nodules.” Because nothing changed after a week, the young woman contacted the beauty doctor via Instagram. “Then I was told to come again.” When the 27-year-old arrived at the address of the ordination, nobody opened it. “I waited an hour, and I couldn’t reach anyone over the phone either. Then I drove back home. What should I have done?” She then received the first warnings via Instagram that the doctor was a fraud.
The woman paid 220 euros for the first treatment and 150 euros for the refresher – without an invoice. When asked by Judge Matiasch whether she was suspicious of that, the 27-year-old said: “Of course it’s weird when you think about it in retrospect.” To this day, her lips are uneven, asymmetrical and the nodules can be felt. The 22-year-old defendant apologized to the woman. “I’m really sorry,” she said and handed her the 150 euros she asked for the treatment. “I was in a stressful situation because she (the doctor, note) wasn’t there and she said I should do it.”
The medical expert Elisabeth Würinger reported on the unbelievably unsanitary conditions under which the wrong doctor worked. The 25-year-old is said to have kept open ampoules and given them to other customers. This was also confirmed by the assistant: “The leftovers were put in the refrigerator and then only the needle was exchanged,” said the 22-year-old. “This is a catastrophe”, because tissue can be pulled up again when the hyaluronic acid is administered. “Words fail me,” said Würinger. The expert also watched the wrong doctor’s promotional videos. “She went in with the syringe where it shouldn’t go.” The woman did not work under sterile conditions and repeatedly touched the needle with her glove. “You can imagine that germs have certainly penetrated,” says Würinger. She therefore rated the injuries as severe.
According to public prosecutor Christoph Köpf, the 25-year-old, who has now been put out to arrest, is said to have treated almost two dozen customers between November 2020 and April 2021 “in a painful, technically grossly improper and careless manner.” It is unclear when the main defendant can be tried, who, according to the public prosecutor’s office, has not completed a medical degree at a recognized university in Austria or in any other country and is therefore not entitled to any surgical interventions.