When Jane* arrived in court on June 2, she had no idea that the case heard 30 minutes after hers would make international headlines.

Jane - a Chinese immigrant in her early 30s - was in the California courthouse as her ex-fiance, Ming Hsuan Chiang, 37, had been charged with physically assaulting her.

She had witnesses, photographs of her bloodied and bruised face and police reports to back up her claims. She hoped that he would receive suitable punishment for his actions.

But Chiang's case, and that of Brock Turner - the Stanford uni student accused of raping a 22-year-old woman behind a garbage bin after a frat party - were to be heard that day by Judge Aaron Persky, a man who has widely been accused of handing down lenient sentences to men accused of assault (there are now petitions to have him sacked).

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Although Jane's ex pleaded no contest to a domestic violence felony of battery causing serious bodily injury, Persky sentenced Chiang to "weekend" jail. That meant he would spend roughly 12 weekends in county jail, and while serving his sentence, he could continue his job as an engineer in Silicon Valley.

Jane - who arrived in the US by herself as a teenager - agreed to speak to The Guardian about her case, as she feels it bolsters the argument that privileged men who attack vulnerable women face minimal consequences in Judge Persky's courtroom.

JANE'S STORY

In 2014, police responded to an emergency call about a woman screaming for help. When officers found Jane, her lower lip was swollen and she had blood all over her face. She told police that her fiance had punched her about five times before she fell down outside the house.

While she was on the ground, Chiang allegedly dragged her by her hair and continued punching her.

"He hit me non-stop," she told the officer according to the report. "He was trying to kill me."

She had scratches on her neck and abrasions in numerous places, photos show.

After talking to witnesses and reviewing the woman's injuries, officers arrested Chiang for domestic violence, and prosecutors charged him with a felony of assaulting a "spouse" and inflicting injuries "resulting in a traumatic condition". If convicted, he could have faced four years in prison.

The woman later told police that the October attack was not the first time Chiang had assaulted her. During an earlier altercation, he had allegedly told her "something to the effect of 'Don't think I won't kill you,'" a second police report says.

Chiang's lawyer denies allegations of previous incidents of domestic violence.

THE CASE DIDN'T GO AS JANE EXPECTED

As she had evidence, witnesses, photos and police reports, Jane thought she had a strong case against Chiang.

"If he had used more force, maybe I'd be dead or my brain would be dead," she said.

In the final deal Judge Persky approved, Chiang pleaded no contest to a battery offence lesser than the more serious charge he initially faced. The lesser offence was still a serious domestic violence felony that could have landed him in state prison for four years, according to the formal plea deal.

But instead, Chiang avoided prison altogether. The agreement called for 72 days in county jail, and Persky allowed the defendant to complete the sentence on weekends. Ultimately, he will only have to serve half of that time, said Kalila Spain, a local prosecutor who represented the victim.

SIMILARITIES TO THE BROCK TURNER CASE

Just hours after Chiang was given this sentence, Judge Persky sentenced Brock Turner to six months in county jail - a punishment that was significantly lighter than the minimum of two years in state prison prescribed by law for Turner's offences. It sparked international outrage.

Jane said she watched news of the Stanford sentencing spread on Facebook and immediately recognised the parallels to her own court battle.

"It's just like the Stanford case," she said, noting that Chiang - a well-paid and highly educated engineer - was also a privileged defendant who could afford a private lawyer.

In her speech in court, Jane said she has struggled with post-traumatic stress disorder and that it seemed unfair that a defendant's lawyer could negotiate with the court to get such a favourable sentence for such a violent crime.

"As the victim, when I get beaten, can I ask for a better offer? Can I ask for a 'discount' beating?" she said. "There's no opportunity for me to negotiate."

When she read her lengthy statement in court, she struggled at times as English is not her first language. On multiple occasions, Judge Persky asked her to speed up and finish her remarks.

After she concluded, Judge Persky said little about her speech. Instead, the judge and Chiang's lawyer discussed the timing of jail in what appeared to be an effort to ensure that the defendant would be released each weekend in time for work on Monday.

WHY SHE DECIDED TO TELL HER STORY

Jane said she wanted to share her story in hope that it would help other victims come forward, especially minority women and immigrants who often fail to get the support they need when they are abused.

"Minority people don't get sufficient resources ... Today, only I'm suffering. But how about tomorrow? How about the next girl?" she said. "Where can we search for help?"

Although she felt the Stanford decision was unfair, "at least people noticed," she said. "At least people paid attention."

* Name changed