Volunteer fireman jailed for 11 years for string of arson attacks

A volunteer fireman has been jailed for 11 years for setting a string of fires in and around the smart commuter town of Laren over a three year period.

Peter K, 32, was arrested last May and made several confessions which he later retracted. The court, however, ruled the confessions could be used in court, despite his lawyer’s claims they were obtained under duress.

The sentence is heavier than the 10 years in jail demanded by the public prosecution department. Judges said this is because of the seriousness of the crimes and the fact society needs to be protected against K.

Lucky escape

K was found guilty of setting 11 fires in and around Laren, where he lived, between 2008 and 2011. Some of the fires were in private homes, others in cars and in woodland.

Although K’s confession stated he always looked for empty properties, in one case the owners were at home asleep and had a lucky escape, the court was told.

K was a volunteer fireman and worked for the emergency services alarm line 112. He was said to have been fascinated by fire since he was a boy.

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