Member of private club ‘glassed woman on dancefloor’

Joanne Zanetton, 38, is accused of swinging a glass at Olga Shnayder’s face at the Arts Club in Dover Street, Mayfair in London

A member of a £2,000-a-year private club allegedly glassed a woman on the dancefloor, who grabbed her hair, because she kept standing on her foot. 

Joanne Zanetton, 38, is accused of swinging a glass at Olga Shnayder’s face at the Arts Club in Dover Street, Mayfair in London.

CCTV footage inside the exclusive venue appeared to show the two women dancing close to each other before they collide and a fight breaks out.

Ms Shnayder was left with a glass shard embedded in her face which she claims was caused by a deliberate strike from Zanetton.

But Zanetton maintains she was the victim and any injuries to Ms Schnayder were accidental as she tried to defend herself, Southwark Crown Court heard.

Jurors were told Ms Shnayder lodged a compensation claim for £19,000 to cover the costs of her medical bills.

Giving evidence Ms Shnayder said she finally nudged Zanetton with her elbow after they came together a number of times on the dance floor.

‘If she just left it would not have happened but she decided to slap me directly in my face and punch me,’ she said.

‘She did it deliberately. She hit me with great strength with the glass.’

Jane Bickerstaff, QC, defending now pregnant Zanetton, suggested the incident was sparked by Ms Shnayder elbowing Zanetton ‘hard’ which caused her to ‘stumble backwards’.

Asked what she did when Zanetton pushed her in retaliation, Ms Shnayder conceded: ‘It looks like I am pulling her hair.’

Ms Bickerstaff added: ‘And punching her on the top of the head?’

Ms Shnayder answered: ‘No, I didn’t punch her.’

The barrister said: ‘I hope it is clear to you, Ms Shnayder, that I suggest that in fact you were the aggressor during this incident and the other female was the one defending herself.’

Ms Shnayder told jurors she required surgery to remove a piece of glass from her cheek as a result of the alleged attack.

She was referred to Northwick Park Hospital to be treated by ‘the best plastic surgeon in the country’ before flying out to America for treatment.

But she denied filling out a compensation claim form for $24,765 – just over £19,000 – in medical bills.

‘Have you or have you not completed a compensation claim for in excess of £19,000?’ asked Ms Bickerstaff.

Olga Shnayder pictured leaving the court today

Olga Shnayder pictured leaving the court today

‘I didn’t complete any compensation claim,’ Ms Shnayder insisted.

She said she merely complained to the hospital about having glass stitched into her face.

‘I sent a letter to the hospital asking where do we go from here,’ she added.

Ms Shnayder was then shown a document which was apparently attached to the form detailing ‘scar remediation’ as well as ‘revision rhinoplasty’.

‘Should we understand you went to America and had some remedial work on your scar and had what is colloquially known as a nose job and that is what is billed for – is that right?’ asked Mr Bickerstaff.

Ms Schnayder said she needed surgery to her nose in order to ‘fix my face’.

‘I needed it to be fixed urgently,’ she added.

Zanetton, of Holland Park Gardens, Kensington, denies inflicting grievous bodily harm.

The Arts Club is a members’ only social club was formed in 1863 for lovers of the arts, science and literature.

Membership costs £2,000 a year, with a joining fee of the same figure.

The trial, expected to last three days, continues.  

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