LJUBLJANA - A young woman who deliberately sawed off her left hand to claim almost £1 million in insurance payouts has been given a two-year jail sentence for fraud.

Julija Adlesic, 22, and her boyfriend claimed the hand was severed above the wrist in an accident while she cut branches, and they left it behind when they went to a hospital for urgent treatment.

But a court in Ljubljana, Slovenia, found that the couple intentionally cut off the hand with a circular saw so that they could make a bogus insurance claim.

An investigation revealed that Adlesic had taken out five insurance policies in the year before her injury, and her 30-year-old boyfriend made internet searches about artificial hands in the days leading up to the incident.

Adlesic was deep in debt and was going through personal bankruptcy proceedings, the court heard.(FA)