Convicted fire-raiser arrested over sofa blaze in tenement

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A MAN with three previous convictions for fire-raising was arrested for setting a sofa alight in a tenement landing, a court has heard.

Alexander Strachan, 40, was collared by police after he started a blaze in a block of flats in Calder Street, Sighthill, in September 2010.

Edinburgh Sheriff Court heard how Strachan – who lived in nearby Cobbinshaw House South – had no recollection of setting the settee on fire.

Depute procurator fiscal John Kirk told the court how the couch had been left outside a home by a resident to be collected by council refuse workers.

But on September 30, 2010, Strachan set fire to it, causing concerned neighbours to phone the fire brigade.

Firefighters managed to extinguish the blaze before Strachan was arrested and charged by police.

The court heard that nobody was injured in the incident.

Strachan, of Calder Crescent, pleaded guilty to a charge of wilful fire-raising before Sheriff Derrick McIntyre.

Sheriff McIntyre deferred sentence to August 1 in order for the court to obtain reports.