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Man who set fire to house with woman and baby inside jailed

Dylan Mason, 21, was sentenced to ten years after trying to set the front door of the home alight.

Thugs are given a total of 28 years at Edinburgh High Court.
Thugs are given a total of 28 years at Edinburgh High Court. Deadline

A man who started a fire outside a house endangering a six-month-old baby during campaign of violence fuelled by illegal drug trade has been jailed.

Dylan Mason, 21, was sentenced to ten years after trying to set the front door of the home alight in the early hours of August 12 last year while the child and a woman were at the property.

His accomplices Reece Gaughan, Lee Murphy and Michael O'Brien were also sentenced to a total of 18 years after forcing entry to homes to threaten and assault.

Mason was originally charged with the attempted murder of Diane Wiseman and the baby following the blaze in Murison Place, in Fraserburgh, Aberdeenshire.

But after an earlier trial at the High Court in Edinburgh he was acquitted of murder and convicted of a lesser charge of wilfully attempting to set fire to the front door to the danger of the lives of occupants.

Mason was linked to the crime through DNA evidence.

He was later joined the three other men who had all admitted violent crimes committed in the Fraserburgh area after the fire-raising offence.

Edinburgh High Court
Edinburgh High Court STV

The judge, Lord Pentland, said the crimes merited a "substantial custodial sentence".

Like Mason, warehouseman Gaughan, 23, unemployed Murphy, 24, and O'Brien, 22, were from Liverpool but lived in Fraserburgh.

First offender Gaughan was jailed for seven years, Murphy for five years and O'Brien for six years.

The court heard on September 10 last year Mason, Gaughan and O'Brien were involved in an attack on Mauro Cardoso at a flat in Academy Road, Fraserburgh, where the victim was struck on the face with a machete during a £800 robbery.

Advocate depute Eris Robertson said: "Mauro Cardoso was struck once on the left cheek, causing it to gape open and bleed extensively."

The trio admitted attacking Mr Cardoso to his severe injury and permanent disfigurement and robbing him. Mason and Gaughan also admitted assaulting Mr Stephen.

The following day the three men were involved in a further assault and attempted robbery at a house in Moray Road, in Fraserburgh.

Defence counsel Drew Mackenzie, for Mason, said he had not previously served a custodial sentence and has shown remorse for his actions.

Edward Targowski QC, for Gaughan, said: "This is the first time he has come before the court on any matter."

Defence counsel Simon Gilbride, for Murphy, said he had an "unenviable" criminal record, but now wanted to become a useful member of society.

O'Brien's counsel Wendy Hay said "He is both embarrassed and ashamed of his behaviour."

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