£30k arson attack man jailed
A MAN who caused over £30,000 worth of damage during an arson attack on a Louth building site has been jailed for two years.
Craig Donaghy had been drinking before he started the fire at the Stepford Homes development on Brackenborough Road in the town.
Mark Watson, prosecuting at Lincoln Crown Court, said firefighters were called to the scene just before 1am to find the blaze was well established.
"The fire officers noticed a single man at the scene. It was this defendant who would go on to tell a fire officer that he did it."
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A forklift truck, a storage container, a diesel tank and tools were destroyed in the blaze. Damage totalling £33,887 was caused.
Donaghy later told police that he was drunk at the time he committed the offence.
Donaghy, 31, of Manor Farm Cottages, North Elkington, admitted arson on July 24, last year.
David Eager, defending, said "It would appear that Mr Donaghy was at a very low time in his life.
"He was suffering from mild depression and he was drinking heavily. That was why he committed the offence. Since then he has sorted his life out."
Mr Eager said that Donaghy had the opportunity to return to his former employment as a butcher and he urged that his client be given a suspended jail sentence.
Judge Michael Heath described the arson attack as "motiveless."
He said: "You will go to prison because I can't suspend a sentence in relation to somebody who, for some reason or other, because he is down in the dumps starts a fire and causes £30,000 worth of damage."