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Arson with Reckless Endangerment

A 32-year-old man was given a 30-month prison sentence for arson with reckless endangerment in March 2013.

He was sentenced at Taunton Crown Court on Friday 15 March. He had earlier pleaded guilty to starting a fire in a wardrobe at a property in Gray’s Road, Taunton, just before midnight on 31 August 2012.

DC Gary Bryant who led the police side of the investigation said: "This was a reckless and dangerous crime committed with the intention to harm. We take arson extremely seriously - it damages property and endangers lives. In this case, he endangered the lives of many, not just the intended victim, due to the nature of the building. 

"I want to thank the fire service and their investigation team for doing a superb job. We will always work closely with our partners in cases such as this with the sole aim of taking robust action to bring such offenders to justice."

The fire service will always assist the police to prosecute anyone who puts lives in danger by deliberately starting fires, it has confirmed.

Group Manager Garry Alford, who investigated the fire, said: "This sentence should act as a deterrent to anyone thinking of committing such a serious crime. Deliberately-set fires often get completely out of control and members of the public and firefighters have been seriously injured or even killed as a result of arsonists.