Burglar jailed for house blaze and rampage at races

Adam Moran
Adam Moran

A burglar left £50,000 worth of damage in his wake after breaking into Pontefract Racecourse and a Monkhill home.

Adam Moran, 25, was jailed for three and a half years after starting a fire outside a house in Monkhill Avenue which spread to neighbouring properties.

Leeds Crown Court heard how Moran also broke into buildings at the rear of one of the racecourse stands in February this year, causing damage in the region of £9,000.

The court heard Moran ransacked the building in an act of “gratuitous vandalism,” ripping down ceiling tiles, damaging furniture, setting off fire extinguishers and ripping out copper piping.

The defendant, of no fixed abode, cut himself during the burglary and left blood at the scene which linked him to the offence.

He was arrested and released on bail, before breaking into the Pontefract home on May 14.

Light fittings were ripped out and around £800 worth of scrap metal was taken from inside the property.

Moran started a fire in the back garden of the property in a bid to burn plastic attached to some metal.

He then left without putting the fire out and it spread to sheds and outbuildings at neighbouring properties.

The court heard the damage was estimated to be between £30,000 and £50,000.

Moran pleaded guilty to arson and two offences of burglary.

Daniel Smith, mitigating, said much of his client’s offending was linked to his drug and alcohol addictions.

Jailing Moran, Recorder Michael Smith said: “It was a highly reckless act.

“You should realise that if you start a fire and leave it, there is always a considerable risk it was spread.”