Page last updated at 14:30 GMT, Thursday, 18 June 2009 15:30 UK

Jail for French banker sex killer

Stern family lawyer Marc Bonnant outside court on 18/6/09
Stern family lawyer Marc Bonnant called the sentence "even-handed"

A woman who admitted killing a wealthy French banker during a sado-masochistic sex game has been sentenced to eight and a half years in jail.

Cecile Brossard was convicted by a Swiss court on Wednesday of the murder of Edouard Stern.

The court had rejected the defence team's argument that she had committed a crime of passion.

Brossard, 40, has already served four years in jail, and is expected to be released by the end of 2011.

The sentencing was welcomed by the Stern family, whose lawyer Marc Bonnant called it a "just and even-handed decision".

'Desperately in love'

The jury on Wednesday found that Brossard had "acted with a certain determination" and that her "state of despair was not excusable".

She had confessed to shooting Stern in his luxury flat in Geneva in 2005.

He was found in a skin-coloured latex suit pierced with four bullet wounds.

They had rowed over $1m, which Brossard had demanded as "proof of his love for her".

He had transferred the money but then had it blocked.

Brossard said she shot him after he told her: "One million dollars is a lot of money to pay for a whore."

She admitted to cleaning up the scene of the crime - reportedly littered with sex toys among expensive antiques - before throwing the gun into Lake Geneva.

Before the jury retired to deliberate their verdict on Wednesday, Brossard made an emotional apology to Stern's family.

"I am a woman who is desperately in love with a man and I remain so," she said.

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