A curry house customer feared he was blinded in an acid attack when a chef threw chilli powder into his eyes, a court heard today.
CCTV footage was shown to a jury of the agonising moment diner David Evans, 47, had the hot spice thrown into his eyes by chef Kamrul Islam.
Footage showed Islam, 47, wearing rubber gloves as he launched a cloud of red powder towards Mr Evans in the restaurant.
Grandfather Mr Evans told how he was left in ‘unbelievable pain’ – and feared he would never see again.
Pipe-fitter Mr Evans said: ‘It was horrific. That’s the only way I can describe it.
‘At first I thought you hear about these acid attacks.
‘It made me think I just had a grandson two weeks before that and I thought I’m never going to see him again. That’s how bad the pain was.’
Mr Evans had been out for dinner with his college lecturer wife Michelle, 48, when they complained about his ‘tough and rubbery’ chicken.
But Islam argued with the couple before Mr Evans followed him to the kitchen.
Islam, owner of Prince of Bengal restaurant, claims he acted in self defence after Mr Evans ‘formed a fist’ as if to punch him.
The footage shown in court showed Mr Evans leaning over in pain clutching his eyes after having the chili thrown in his eyes while his wife comes over to help him.
Mr Evans said: ‘I knew I was in trouble. I was screaming get the police and ambulance there.
The court heard Mr Evans splashed cold water into his eyes for 30 to 40 minutes before the police arrived.
Mr Evans said he suffered burns to his neck, face, lips, stomach and chest and added: ‘The pain was unbelievable.’
He spent between three to four hours at hospital on January 21 before being discharged in the early hours of the next morning.
Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court heard he was treated with a saline drip and given steroids and antibiotics.
But Ruth Smith, defending, said Mr Evans had never said in police statements that the chicken smelled like ‘paraffin.’
Ms Smith said: ‘What happened is that you were abusive weren’t you.
‘You wanted a violent confrontation.’
But Mr Evans said: ‘He had the chilli powder in his hands already when I got to the door. I’m not the aggressor here.
‘I am doing what a decent bloke would have done. I wanted an apology.’
The court heard Islam shouted at the couple saying ‘it is f***ing tandoori chicken’ and ‘you only want a free meal, I’ve met you people before.’
Islam claimed Mr Evans pursued him ‘with a view to violence’ in Tonypandy, Rhondda, South Wales.
Islam, of Pentre, South Wales, pleaded not guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm.
The trial at Merthyr Tydfil Crown Court continues.