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19-year-old Alex Thomas Raftery has been given a suspended sentence by a Crown Court judge after setting fire to and destroying 3 barns on the outskirts of Ryde last year.

Raftery, of Kinson in Bournemouth, has been handed down a 9-month sentence at a Young Offenders Institute, suspended for 18 months. He has also been ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid work, 10 rehabilitation days and a number of thinking skills sessions.

Despite causing £150,000 of damage, the teen is to pay just £149 as a victim surcharge and £200 in court costs.

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The blaze on 1st August 2019 consumed around 800 haybales and saw firefighters from the mainland drafted in to provide cover across the Island.

Earlier this year, the court heard how Raftery set 2 fires on land off Gatehouse Road. 1 of the fires was extinguished by a 16-year-old – who cannot be named for legal reasons – which resulted in him being cleared of any wrongdoing. Unfortunately, the second fire was not extinguished and it soon ripped through 3 barns.

The young arsonist was caught at the scene and swiftly placed into the back of a Police van – as exclusively captured on camera by Island Echo.

Sentencing information originally reported by IWCP

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The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Justice? NO.
What an utter shambles.

David Nelson

Exactly! pathetic decision by the judge
The people let down again

Carly Green

Disgusting. Send the message to other growing numbers of charity kept low life, ‘just do as you please’ there will be no punishment, and you might earn a few pounds uploading your actions onto social media’ Even if not something to laugh about to your mates for years. No small wonder the Police can’t be bothered now. The UK has had it. Ought to have had boiling water poured over its leg at the very least, to know the pain it would have no doubt equally have inflicted and laughed about if any animals were in those barns. Fight fire… Read more »

Chef annie

What’s the point

Martin W

I bet he is laughing with mates at the weakness of adults. The courts need sacking and members of the general public, selected as we do with Juries should choose the sentence NOT some tired old fools who hear so much vile crime they become hardened or senile with age when giving such punishments.

IF we never had half the world in UK jails perhaps they could sentence our OWN low life for meaningful terms too.

Lets hope he gets burnt on his next undoubted arson fun day out.

Gentleman farmer

if at be my barns i set me dog on him
court no good no more
needs learnin a lesson
plenty appy to do it for free an all

Opinions Matter

A complete waste of tax payers money taking this little shit to court.

Egor the rotten

Well we all knew that would bloody happen when he was 1st charged…..set fire to a hard working farmer property and get a smacked wrist unbelievable……give him to the farmer

Opinions Matter

Stick a pitchfork up his arse!


Don’t think they can print what I think.


Absolute joke. Judges need sacking and get real people to do the job. £150,000 worth of damage plus how much it’s cost getting him to court ,he should be made to pay it all back for the rest of his life. I’m so angry, criminals are getting away with it all the time, what’s up with this country!


200 hours of unpaid work = he will only do a couple of hours a day, two times in a week – maximum

it will take him over a year to complete this and his 10 days rehab and thinking skills – whatever that is.

he won’t even be 21 before he is in the clear. £349 in total to pay, at £5 a week off his benefits – that will take 18 months to clear as well.

more of an inconvenience than anything.

(can hear him now…. “I will meet you in the pub at 8pm lads, gotta do work for probation till 7.30 – mines a fosters”)

Gaz B.Sc

What a piss take sentence considering what the poor farmer has lost. Bet he was smirking all the way home. Needs a good kicking and let the farmer do it.


This is what happens when the pc gang get involved and do away with public hangings


What a load of crap….. Very bad


Don’t want a fixed link cos them mainland trouble makers will come!,well guess what they’re already here


They should ban him from this Island and send him back to Bournemouth, why should ‘we’ have to put up with him ?Same with all that try to ruin this Island and put Islanders at risk. Ban them from coming back and send them back to where they are from.

Dicky Daniels

This so called judge should be charged for wasting taxpayers money. Usual non sentence. Police are wasting there time.


Get compensation from his family, mind you they are probably dregs as well.


That pathetic judge should be defrocked immediately, he has now place in a court room.

mr justice

I did put a post on how it’s society that has brought this to happen. But I guess the echo didn’t like my opinion. Law= weak


The sentence is pathetic, yes the victim was probably insured but their premium will rise, therefore they are technically fined as for the piece of shit who gets community service (hopefully labour is at the farm) no doubt painting railings or picking weeds outside a council/politician house.

Opinions Matter

SUSPENDED SENTENCE! Bet he’s laughing his balls off. Another serious law breaker got away with it. What the hell is wrong with these judges who decide the punishment… OR NOT!

Opinions Matter

Are these island judges? Would love to meet them and tell them what I think of their decisions

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