Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 10°C

min temp: 2°C

Search

Hadleigh: Man who started fire that destroyed two VW Golfs worth £40k escapes jail term

11:30 05 September 2014

Ipswich Crown Court

Ipswich Crown Court

Archant

A man who started a £40,000 blaze at a Suffolk garage out of a “misplaced sense of loyalty” to a relative who had a grievance with the business, has walked free from court.

Gavin Seager, 35, of Wilson Road, Hadleigh, admitted arson and was given a 10-month prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to do 80 hours unpaid work in the community.

Ipswich Crown Court heard that two VW Golf cars worth £20,000 each, which had been parked at Barnards VW garage in Station Road West, Stowmarket, were written off in the blaze and £1,875 damage was caused to a canopy on the building.

The blaze was started on November 13 by Seager out of a “misplaced sense of loyalty” to his brother-in-law who had “a beef” with Barnards about a problem with his car not being covered by a warranty, said Andrew Thompson, prosecuting.

One of the cars destroyed in the fire belonged to Seager’s brother-in-law. The fire was started on the same day he was told that serious damage to the engine, which had been caused by the fitting of a faulty non VW fuel filter by a previous owner, was not covered by a VW warranty.

Mr Thompson said there was no suggestion that Seager’s brother-in-law was in any way connected with the blaze.

Seager was arrested after police officers traced a van, used by the person who started the fire, back to him – and he made full admissions.

Seager was also ordered to pay costs of £1,200 and £1,875 compensation.

Sentencing him, Judge David Goodin said Seager, who has no previous convictions, had suffered from a significant series of depressive episodes.

“In these circumstances it wouldn’t be necessarily in the public interest to send you straight to prison,” said the judge.

“I have every reason to expect today will be the last day you walk through the door of a court,” he added.

Steven Dyble, for Seager, said his client had committed the offence out of a wholly misplaced loyalty to a family member.

He said Seager, who had had a career in motor racing until his early 30s, had suffered from prolonged depressive episodes in 2012 and had made several attempts to kill himself.

Mr Dyble said Seager had stupidly decided to intervene in a “completely unsophisticated way” after learning of his brother-in-law’s dispute with the garage.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

A consultation exercise over possible huge rent rises for beach hut owners at Felixstowe has generated more than 700 responses.

The death of a well known Stowmarket couple has left a community in shock, as police are understood to be investigating the incident as a potential murder and suicide.

The NHS trust running Colchester’s hospitals is looking to make savings totalling £17million next year – while still running up a £22m deficit.

Churchgoers are devastated by the theft of a memorial donated to a Suffolk village by two war heroes in memory of a British martyr.

Liberal Democrat peers will attempt to force the government to set out its strategy on local funding and economic growth post-Brexit.

Sixteen students from Framlingham College undertook their spiritual ‘rite of passage’ and were Confirmed by the Bishop of St Edmundsbury and Ipswich, the Rt Rev Martin Seeley.

A Suffolk police officer facing a misconduct hearing for allegedly drink driving last year has said a previously undiagnosed medical condition could have affected the breathalyser test.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Eating Out in the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Eating Out
supplement

View

Visit the Broads

cover

Click here to view
the Visit the Broads
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24