A Chinese kindergarten teacher who poisoned 25 children, killing one, has been sentenced to death by a central Chinese court.
The Jiaozuo Intermediate People's Court, in China's north-central province of Henan, heard that Wang Yun sparred with her colleague over how to manage pupils in March 2019.
In retaliation, she poisoned porridge prepared for the students with sodium nitrite.
Beyond killing one student, the poisoning resulted in more than a dozen minor injuries while three children suffered serious injuries.
Nitrite is a naturally-occurring substance — plants and soil produce nitrites and nitrates from nitrogen in the air — but too much of this substance causes methemoglobinemia in humans, where the body is deprived of oxygen and subsequently turns people into a shade of blue-grey.
These substances form the building blocks for other volatile substances such as ammonium nitrate, which was the chemical behind Beirut's deadly port blast.
In its sentencing, the court labelled Wang's actions "despicable" and "vicious".
"Wang Yun's criminal motives are despicable, her subjective viciousness is extremely deep, her criminal methods and circumstances are extremely bad, and the consequences are particularly serious," the court statement read.
The court also heard Wang understood the dangers of nitrate, as she poisoned her husband following an argument in 2017. He suffered minor injuries at the time.
Wang and the manager of the kindergarten have also been asked to financially compensate each of the affected families.