Ex-owner of Doncaster Rovers jailed for arson plot
Saturday 06 March 1999
Ken Richardson, 61, showed no emotion as Judge Peter Baker QC sentenced him.
Richardson, of Douglas, Isle of Man, presented "a sorry figure in the dock", said the judge, but he exercised great influence on the club and "used money to set in train serious crime".
Richardson was convicted of conspiracy to commit arson after a two-week trial in January. Sheffield Crown Court was told that the wealthy businessman offered pounds 10,000 to a former SAS soldier to start the fire in 1995 at the club's Belle Vue ground, causing damage put at pounds 100,000. The prosecution said Richardson's intention was to try to force Rovers to move to a new stadium.
The plan failed when Alan Kristiansen, who was hired to start the fire, left his mobile phone at the scene and was quickly traced and arrested.
Gilbert Gray QC, Richardson's barrister, said the five weeks his client had spent in jail since conviction had seriously affected his mental and physical health. He said: "He is a mere shadow of his former self."
Mr Gray said Richardson wanted the best for Doncaster Rovers. "Was this a greedy man seeking to make a huge killing out of insurance? The answer is no," he said. "What it could have achieved was a move for the club."
In 1984 Richardson was given a nine-month suspended sentence and fined pounds 20,000 for his part in a racing scandal known as the Flockton Grey affair.
At an earlier hearing Kristiansen, 41, of Newcastle, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit arson. He was jailed yesterday for 12 months.
Two other men who helped him to start the fire - Ian Hay, 54, from Gateshead, and Alan Cracknall, 32 of Ryton, Newcastle - pleaded guilty to arson. Both were sentenced to nine months, suspended for two years.
The judge said he was considering ordering Richardson to pay costs of pounds 75,000.
- 1 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 2 Mother of newborn Baby No 59 trapped in sewer pipe told Chinese police she 'heard crying' when she raised alarm
- 3 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 4 Tennis fan suing Australian Open organisers for 'failing to shade spectators' during Murray match
- 5 This crazy skiing video will leave you feeling queasy
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
AirAsia QZ8501: Black box reveals warning alarms 'screamed' before crash, as more bodies recovered from near fuselage of jet
Rob Lowe hits out at White House decision not to meet Israeli leader
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
British Muslim leaders outraged after Eric Pickles says followers of Islam should 'prove their identity'
UK terror fears: My jihadist son returned from Syria mentally scarred – now he is being ignored
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
Billy Crystal: 'Stop shoving gay sex scenes in my face'
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
Excellent Salary : Austen Lloyd: OXFORD - REGIONAL FIRM - An excellent opportu...
Super Package: Austen Lloyd: BRISTOL - SENIOR CLINICAL NEGLIGENCE - An outstan...
£15000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Fantastic opportunities are ava...
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Compute Engineer is required to join a globa...