A woman died after she started to believe the coronavirus pandemic was a cover-up for a foreign invasion and set herself on fire, an inquest has heard.

Zsuzsanna Marlyin had suffered mental health issues 10 years ago but had been found to have no evidence of psychosis when assessed by medical professionals during lockdown.

She was living with Richard Tell, her husband of 24 years in Moulton near Spalding, Lincolnshire, when emergency services including the police and fire service were called to the home on April 17, earlier this year.

At the time, police revealed that two people had been taken to hospital after being injured in the fire, Lincolnshire Live reports.

An inquest has now revealed that the fire was started by Mrs Marlyin, who set herself alight after she became increasingly anxious about the pandemic.

Police were called to the fire on April 17 this year

She was rushed to a specialist unit in Broomsfield Hospital in Essex after suffering burns to 83 per cent of her body, but died two days later.

In the hearing, a statement from her grieving widower was read out by coroner Tim Brennand, Spalding Voice reports.

He told the inquest his wife had started to “read the news more often” during lockdown to the point it was becoming “quite excessive”.

He added that she came to believe the pandemic was a hoax, and he found her in tears saying she didn't want to die.

His statement read: “She would say ‘I’m stupid for believing it’ and this slowly changed in the week up to Easter when she said that COVID-19 was a cover up for an invasion by the Chinese or possibly the Russians.”

“I tried to calm her down but she was concerned. I hoped it would pass.”

The hearing then heard on April 12, Easter Sunday, Mrs Marlyin bought prescription drugs and boarded up one of the windows.

Police initially said two people had been injured in he fire

Her behaviour prompted her husband to immediately contacted her GP and a mental health crisis team – but no evidence of psychosis was found.

Mr Tell also said his wife had become fixated with the Chinese and said she had also shared concerns about not being able to see her family living in her native Hungary.

It was heard that on Friday, April 17, he had discovered his wife with pruning clippers and the extension cable of an appliance for the garden – but when challenged she said she didn’t know why she was doing it.

Mr Tell said he went inside to unplug the cord while she went to the barn.

He said his next memory was seeing his partner covered in flames and running past the window.

Mr Tell’s statement continued: “The next thing I saw was her running past my study window. She was on fire.

“I went to get something to put the flames out. By the time I came out most of the flames were out.

Mrs Marlyin died in Broomfield Hospital in Essex

“Suza tried to run away from me but I caught her up the road.”

A passing motorist dialled 999 and paramedics rushed Mrs Marlyin to hospital in Peterborough but due to the severity of her injuries she was transferred to intensive care in Essex.

It was noted in the hearing that paramedics described Mrs Marlyin as “lucid” when responding to questions.

She died two days later.

The hearing heard that she had previously received treatment for depression 10 years ago – but had never made an attempt to take her own life.

It was also heard that she had lost her mother-in-law in the February while her dog had passed just before Christmas, which had hit her very hard.

Mr Brennand concluded a narrative verdict for the death.

He said he was convinced that Mrs Marlyin did set fire to herself, but said he could not be sure she intended to her end her life.

He praised the actions of the health professionals who administered her care and said her partner did the “best he could.”

Mr Brennand said: “This is indeed a tragic and somewhat surreal and bizarre case.

“I’m entirely satisfied this was a deliberate act. The fire report negates any suggestion it’s linked to any vapours or fumes on her clothing and some spark or trigger caused the fire.

“However on the issue of intent, I’m not satisfied that she was intending her life to be brought to an end.

“On the one hand one can infer this must be a spontaneous decision on the part of the deceased, if it was deliberate and intentional suicide there may well have been a note, there may have been the usual or customary arrangements of her affairs.

“They may have been careful and considerable preparation. She may have gone for a more conventional way of bringing her life to an end if this was a suicide scenario.”

Continuing, he said he did not believe the deceased was of “sound mind”.

He added: “I do not consider that her actions can be attributed to being intentional.

“I can only offer my profound sympathies to the family and friends of the deceased.”