No-one has been brought to justice for the killing of a disabled boy in an arson attack at his Keighley home.

A 17-year-old youth, who had been charged with the manslaughter of 12-year-old Damian Clough walked free yesterday after he was found not guilty by a Bradford Crown Court jury.

On Wednesday, his co-accused Nasir Khan, 18, of Buxton Street, Dalton Lane, Keighley, was also acquitted of Damian’s manslaughter on the directions of the trial judge, Mr Justice Treacy.

Damian, who was severely autistic, died in a fire at his home at Kinara Close, Stockbridge, Keighley, on April 4 last year.

Damian’s mother, Julie Clough, was visibly upset yesterday as Mr Justice Treacy told the court that the judicial system had not been able to satisfactorily identify who set fire to the house that night. He thanked the jurors for their care in “a difficult case”.

“Unfortunately, the system has not been able to identify who took the life of an innocent young boy,” he said.

After the acquittals of Mr Khan, and the youth, who cannot be named due to his age, the senior investigating officer in the case, Detective Chief Inspector Lisa Atkinson, said: “This has been a tragic case in which a young boy has lost his life and our thoughts very much remain with members of his family “The investigation into the fire was a thorough and detailed one by detectives from the Homicide and Major Enquiry Team into what has been a harrowing incident which has deeply upset residents in the local community.”

During the eight-day trial, the court was told the teenagers blamed each other for lighting the fire at Damian’s home.

Damian, who was alone in the house, died from poisonous fumes released by the slow-burning fire.

His body was found by firefighters who smashed their way into the house.

He was lying naked on a blanket in his bedroom. The family dog was found dead outside the door.

During the trial, Mrs Clough said she left Damian asleep in his bedroom to go to work.

Fighting back tears, she said she was mentally tired and had expected his sister back soon.

Julian Goose QC, for the Crown, said two fires were started in the house before 10pm.

Experts said a naked flame was used to deliberately set fire to an armchair in the living room.

Another fire, in the kitchen, went out after causing minor damage.

The jury heard that Damian had severe learning difficulties. He shredded mattresses and wallpaper and had broken off his bedroom door handle.

His condition left him unable to react to any danger.

Mr Goose told the court Mrs Clough was coping as best she could, with the support of the local authority social services department and the housing association.

Mr Khan and the 17-year-old were among a group of five youths who went to Damian’s home after buying alcohol and cigarettes.

The pair stayed behind when the other three left, the court was told.

Both denied the manslaughter charge saying they had not started the fire in the house.