Limavady man charged with arson

Derry's Courthouse on Bishop Street. 3003JM66
Derry's Courthouse on Bishop Street. 3003JM66

A 53-year-old man has appeared in court accused of setting fire to a house in Dungiven.

Anthony Paul McGuigan, of Eventide Gardens, Limavady, is charged with arson with intent to endanger life on December 12.

Derry Magistrates Court heard allegations that the house was ‘extensively damaged’ in the incident but no one was present in the property at the time.

However, the court was told that a family with four children lived in an adjoining property in Rannyglass, Dungiven.

It was alleged the resident of the house and McGuigan had been in a ‘volatile relationship’ since 2004 and there is an ‘extensive domestic violence history’ between them.

The court was told that McGuigan went to Dungiven with a man he had been drinking with in Limavady.

The 53-year-old allegedly left the taxi for a time.

It is alleged when he returned he said ‘I burnt that old b****** house’.

Opposing bail, an investigating officer said police believe McGuigan ‘poses a risk to the injured party and a risk to the community’.

Defence solicitor Paddy MacDermott said his client denies starting the fire and claims he went to the area because he received a text informing him about it.

Refusing bail, District Judge Barney McElholm said this version of events is a ‘fantasy’ and McGuigan is ‘clearly a danger and risk to the public’.

The 53-year-old was remanded in custody until January 8.