Arson - simple
Date Produced: 1 July 2011
Title: Criminal Damage
Offence: Arson - simple
Legislation: S1(1) AND (3) Criminal Damage Act
Mode of Trial: Either Way
Statutory Limitations & Maximum Penalty: Life. Serious Specified Offence
Aggravating and Mitigating Factors
- Intentional / reckless.
- Motivation - revenge or political
- Use of accelerants / firebombs.
- Injury caused.
- Extent of damage.
- Risk of fire spreading.
- Dwelling attacked.
- Public building / school attacked.
Relevant sentencing Guidelines
None but note
R. v Calladine November 25, 1975 Psychiatric reports should be obtained before sentencing.
Relevant Sentencing Case Law
R v Brown (1984) 6 Cr.App.R.(S.) 335
The defendant stole piping causing a gas leak and lit a match causing a fire which resulted in £65K damage.
Guilty plea. 2 and a half years' imprisonment.
R v Chamberlain (1987) 9 Cr.App.R.(S.) 337
Pleaded guilty to attempted arson. Late at night the defendant poured petrol over the walls of a pub from
which he had been ejected. Amount of damage and state of mind of the offender. Deliberate revenge attack.
2 and a half years' imprisonment
R v Shah (1985) 7 Cr.App.R.(S.) 456
The defendant started a fire in his chip shop and submitted a false insurance claim for £14K. .
Guilty plea. 4 years' imprisonment + 1 year consecutive for obtaining by deception.
R v Elliott (1989) 11 Cr.App.R.(S.) 67
The defendant was sacked and set fire to a bus depot causing £1.8M damage. Deliberate revenge attack but no danger to the public. Guilty plea 5 years' imprisonment.
R v Smith (1994) 15 Cr. App. R. (S.) 594
The defendant, an animal rights activist, placed incendiary devices under a number of tractors. Previous 4 year sentence for similar. Guilty plea. 6 years' imprisonment.
ASBO Restraining Order
ARCHBOLD 23-26, 23-46
Return to the Sentencing Manual index