"The Dentist Of Horror" has been sentenced to eight years in jail

Jacobus van Nierop performed painful procedures on medically healthy patients

Jacobus Marinus Mark van Nierop, France, Nevers, dentist, trial, violence, mutilation

In this photo dated May 16th 2009, Dutch dentist Jacobus Van Nierop is pictured in his dental office in Chateau-Chinon, France | Image: Christophe Masson / AP/Press Association Images

A French dentist accused of taking pleasure from his patients' pain has been sentenced to eight years in jail.

51-year-old Jacobus van Nierop, was called "the dentist of horror", for deliberately pulling out healthy teeth and leaving dozens of patients with broken jaws, abscesses and blood poisoning.

News agency AFP says the court in the central town of Nevers also banned him from practicing as a dentist and fined him €10,500.

Mr van Nierop was accused of carrying out the dental procedures to claim money from medical insurance.

Many former patients attended the opening of the trial, where they described their experiences at the hands of van Nierop.

One said he had "ruined" her life after she had gone to have her teeth cleaned.

Danielle Wezemael said: "He filed my teeth down so I had to use my palate to chew".

Another former patient Nicole Martin said: "When I was on his chair he was a real brute".

"I have since seen other dentists who were gentle, who had the technical means which means that today when you go to the dentist's you don't suffer any longer - but it is certain that he had no compassion...he would carry on pulling out teeth".

Geraldine Letot said she had had to undergo extensive dental work after seeing van Nierop, including having teeth removed.

"I have pain, pain that I had never experienced before and which I should never have had," she said outside the court.

Van Nierop, who is originally from the Netherlands, disappeared after being questioned by French police in 2013.

He was arrested the following year in New Brunswick, Canada.