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Man jailed for arson

PUBLISHED: 19:00 22 December 2001 | UPDATED: 11:04 03 March 2010

AN Ipswich man has been jailed for four years for burning down his council house.

Richard Wright, 38, of London Road, admitted arson.

Ipswich Crown Court heard how he splashed petrol around his Kelly Road council house and set light to it.

AN Ipswich man has been jailed for four years for burning down his council house.

Richard Wright, 38, of London Road, admitted arson.

Ipswich Crown Court heard how he splashed petrol around his Kelly Road council house and set light to it.

Robert Sadd, prosecuting, said Wright was "reckless" as to whether anyone else would be injured or killed when he set fire to the mid-terrace house at midnight on August 29.

Mr Sadd said although nobody was injured in the blaze Wright's two dogs perished as a result of the fire. He added that "extensive damage was caused" to the house.

Noel Casey, mitigating, said Wright's wife had left him on the night of the fire because their five-week marriage had come to an end. The couple had known each other for just a few months following the break-up of Wright's previous marriage of five years.

Mr Casey said the two marriage break-ups and the loss of contact with his two-year-old son had resulted in Wright suffering with depression and drinking heavily on the night in question.

"He had quite a lot to drink that night and still doesn't remember splashing petrol around," said Mr Casey.

Judge John Devaux read Wright's pre-sentence and psychiatric reports and heard about Wright's relationship problems which stemmed from his difficult childhood.

"You have not got previous convictions for arson and this offence was described as an impulsive act," said Judge Devaux.

However, he added: "You were reckless as to whether others were harmed. You removed yourself from the house but not your two dogs and they died."

Wright was jailed for four years.


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