Arsonist Michael Magraw jailed for three and a half years after torching car

Daily Echo: Michael Magraw Michael Magraw

A FIRE-RAISER was today counting the cost of torching a top-of-the-range car and attempting to destroy another – a three and a half year jail term.

In financial difficulties after his courier business ran into trouble, Michael Magraw accepted a £500 fee to set fire to a Range Rover and a BMW parked outside a house in Bitterne Road East, Southampton, during the night.

Daily Echo:

Jurors heard two different accounts as to the background of the drama, which was captured by security cameras. Reckless As previously reported, CCTV picked him up pouring petrol over the windscreen of the BMW parked right outside the house, before moving a few feet to a Range Rover on an adjacent service road.

Magraw pleaded guilty to two counts of attempting to commit arson when reckless as to whether lives would be endangered, and one count of arson.

Passing sentence, Judge Derwin Hope – who read a letter from the solicitor of the Roath family, asking for leniency – described the offences as being extremely dangerous.

In mitigation, Benjamin Holt said at the time Magraw was approached to set the fires, he owed £4,000 to loan companies after his courier business had run into difficulties, with some of his customers not paying their bills. Mr Holt said Magraw had initially been held on remand in prison which he found “a shocking experience” before being released on bail.

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