Shisha cafe owner guilty of rivalry arson

17/07/2013

A Leicester shisha café owner who set fire to a rival establishment has been convicted at Leicester Crown Court of arson being reckless as to whether life is endangered.

Imtiyaz Patel set a fire at the premises of the Cloud 9 shisha caf in October 2012, which was located on the top floor of a factory building. The fire got out of control and the caf was completely destroyed. Other businesses in the building were open at the time, including a textiles company, and had to be evacuated.

Steve Chappell, Chief Crown Prosecutor at CPS East Midlands said: "Imtiyaz Patel broke into the premises and used petrol to start the fire and then left, completely ignorant of the destruction the fire would cause and the danger he had put people in. He later admitted setting the fire out of spite in the hope that people would come to his caf instead, but had not intended it to be so serious.

"Patels actions have destroyed a business that had taken months to build up and left the owner without a livelihood. The fire took hold in the middle of the morning in an occupied building. If is fortunate that nobody was seriously hurt as a result of his reckless and selfish actions."

Imtiyaz Patel will be sentenced in September.