Plastics arsonist locked up

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AN ARSONIST who did more than £400,000 worth of damage has been sent to a young offenders’ institution.

David Allison was involved in setting light to a lorry from which flames spread to a plastics recycling factory in Brandon causing £400,000 worth of damage. He also burned a stack of straw bales at Sapiston worth £24,000 and others worth £200 at Ixworth.

At Ipswich Crown Court on Wednesday, Allison, 20, of Peppers Close, Weeting, was sentenced to 24 months in custody.

A 16-year-old youth from the Brandon area, who admitted two arson offences resulting from the Chase Plastics blaze, was made the subject of a 10 month referral order putting him under supervision.

The court heard how the fire on February 20, 2010, was started in a lorry trailer loaded with waste plastic then spread to the industrial unit housing Chase Plastics.

Prosecutor Richard Potts said CCTV pictures showed a Ford Escort car entering the industrial estate at about the time of the fire. It was traced to a 19-year-old Weeting man who will be sentenced at a later date in connection with the blaze.

Last month, Allison went on trial at Ipswich Crown Court where a jury found him guilty of starting the fire inside the trailer but not guilty of arson involving a storage area at the plastics factory.

Mr Potts said that on August 23 2009 Allison started a fires which destroyed 450 tonnes of baled straw at Sapiston and more bales at Ixworth.

In Mitigation, Jonathan Goodman said that Allison was a dedicated and motivated young man who held down two jobs and was highly thought of by his employers.

Since the fires Allison was trying to rebuild his life. Mr Goodman said: “What started out as an escapade ended up costing someone a great deal of money.”