AN arsonist, paedophile, and three burglars were among those jailed this past week at Bradford Crown Court.

FIRST up was a revenge arsonist who torched a Bradford takeaway because he thought he was owed £75 in unpaid wages was jailed for four years and two months.

Waqas Ali doused the back door at Waj’s in Manchester Road, Bradford, with petrol before setting the building on fire in a “grand gesture of destruction,” the judge sentencing him said.

Ali, 22, of Donisthorpe Street, Little Horton, Bradford, pleaded guilty to reckless arson in the early hours of August 25 last year.

He was arrested on a warrant after failing to attend at Bradford Crown Court for sentence on July 2.

Prosecutor Philip Adams said Ali started the fire at 5am while a couple and their child were sleeping in the flat above.

He had bought petrol from a nearby filling station and threw it over the cellar door before igniting it and running away.

The owner of the takeaway, Wajid Ashgar, was on the scene very quickly, along with the fire service.

Around £30,000 damage was done to the property, with the kitchen area gutted. The family occupying the flat escaped unhurt and their home sustained minor smoke damage.

Mr Ashgar made enquiries locally and obtained CCTV footage from a business that showed Ali with a canister of petrol.

He was a former employee at the takeaway but had left five months previously and claimed that Mr Ashgar owed him £75 in unpaid wages.

Ali was arrested three days later and told the police he got drunk and lost his temper. He bought £10 of petrol and set the building alight.

He said he did not know that a family was living above the takeaway.

The court heard that Mr Ashgar had to close the business for four months. His insurance claim was still not sorted out and the incident had put a big strain on his family.

 “It seemed to you to be a good idea to torch, to burn down, to destroy the property of Mr Ashgar. You were looking at a grand gesture of destruction,” Judge Jonathan Rose told Ali.

Ali was jailed for 50 months with a three-year extended licence period that puts him under close supervision on his release.

NEXT was a paedophile who played “cat and mouse” with the police and the courts for almost a decade was locked up for more than three years.

Neil Jackson, 47, repeatedly breached orders designed to keep children safe from his perverted sexual offending, Bradford Crown Court heard.

Jackson, of Kelvin House, Danecourt Road, Holme Wood, Bradford, lied to hide his “repugnant and reprehensible” interest in young boys, hiding his phone containing indecent images when the police arrived to search his home.

Prosecutor Clare Walsh said that Jackson was cautioned in 2010 for possession of an indecent image of a child.

In July, 2012, he was jailed for three years for 18 offences relating to similar perverted photos. An indefinite Sexual Offences Prevention Order (SOPO) was made, which he breached the following year, receiving a three-month sentence of imprisonment.

In 2015, Jackson received a suspended jail sentence for failing to comply with the requirements of the sex offender register. In 2017, he breached the SOPO again and last year he again failed to comply with the sex offender notification requirements.

The court heard that the police searched Jackson’s flat on March 20 this year and found that he had a credit card and a phone he had not told the police about.

He tried to hide the phone under the sofa and then said there was nothing incriminating on it.

When it was analysed, it was found to have one Category A indecent image of a child on it, a Category B film clip and 120 Category C images.

Mrs Walsh said the pictures were of boys aged 10 to 15 engaged in sexual activity.

Jackson denied any perverted interest in children when he was interviewed by the police but conceded that he needed help.

He pleaded guilty to possession of the indecent images and breach of the SOPO.

Judge Jonathan Rose jailed Jackson for three years and two months.

“You are afflicted with a sexual interest in children that is repugnant and reprehensible,” he said.

TWO housebreakers who threatened to burn down their victim’s home when they were disturbed raiding it at dead of night received lengthy prison sentences.

Marc McCrory and Nathan Cawley were labelled “pernicious and wicked” for the burglary in Ghyll Wood Drive, Cottingley, Bingley, at 1am on February 12.

McCrory, 23, of Lower Grange Close, Bradford, was jailed for four years and Cawley, 24, of March Cote Lane, Cottingley, was locked up for three years and seven months.

Prosecutor Clare Walsh told Bradford Crown Court that the householder was asleep in bed when he was alerted by a neighbour that his home was being burgled.

The defendants had removed the television set from the detached house and were piling other property into a stolen Ford Fiesta.

When the neighbour’s son took the Fiesta keys, the burglars threatened to burn the house down. They warned that they would return with a knife and then threw stones at the residents.

McCrory and Cawley then got into the householder’s car and tried to steal it but it was immobilised, so they hurled a boulder at another residents’ car, denting it and smashing a window.

Mrs Walsh said that Cawley had a screwdriver while they were making threats.

He and McCrory had loaded stolen laptop computers, car keys, school bags, speakers and coins into the Fiesta, the court heard.

They were identified from CCTV footage and from fingerprints left on the Fiesta.

They pleaded guilty to burglary and attempting to steal the car.

McCrory had 15 previous convictions for 23 offences. It was his fourth court appearance for house burglary and he was on licence at the time. He asked the court to take into account three more offences of house burglary, including the one in which the Fiesta was stolen.

Cawley had previous convictions for house burglary, theft and robbery.

Judge Rose said the men were guilty of “pernicious and wicked behaviour.”

They had scouted out a house to burgle and removed a lot of property when they were disturbed by the brave actions of the neighbours. The father and son should be commended for their courage in thwarting the burglary.

FINALLY, a drug addict who stole an elderly woman’s handbag from her flat to fund his habit was jailed for two years.

Luke Darling sneaked the bag, containing his 84-year-old victim’s purse and bus pass, out of an open window at the complex for elderly people, Bradford Crown Court heard.

Three days later, Darling, 24, made off with a children’s PlayStation when he burgled their grandfather’s home, leaving a knife in the garden.

Darling, of New Fields Walk, Wapping, Bradford, pleaded guilty to two house burglaries, using the elderly woman’s bank card fraudulently and obstructing a police officer when he was arrested.

Prosecutor Dave MacKay said that Darling stole the handbag from the pensioner’s flat in Undercliffe, Bradford, on the evening of June 17.

She did not realise it was missing until the next morning. She was left very distressed and inconvenienced by the loss of her bank card and bus pass.

Darling got through an open window at the unoccupied house in Dalby Avenue, Fagley, on June 20 and stole the £250 PlayStation and a set of car keys.

Mr MacKay said the householder found a knife in his garden that Darling had left behind.

Darling, who was on prison licence at the time, had nine previous convictions, including court appearances for house burglary and possession of an offensive weapon.