1. ITV Report

Philpott trial: The fire and the court case

Police van outside the home Photo: ITV News Central

The fire began in the early hours of the morning of May 11th 2012 at the Philpott's family home at No.18 Victory Road.

The front of the house in Victory road after the fire Credit: Derbyshire Police

The six children - Duwayne, Jade, John, Jack, Jesse and Jayden - were asleep upstairs in their bedrooms. Their parents Mick & Mairead Philpott claimed they were asleep downstairs in the conservatory.

The conservatory at the rear of the Philpott’s house where Mick and Mairead said they were sleeping when the fire was started Credit: Derbyshire Police

Mick Philpott said he was woken by the sound of smoke alarms, and that when he realised it was a fire he ran into the back garden and climbed a ladder to try to rescue the children from the upstairs bedroom windows.

The ladder used by Mick Philpott on the night of the fire Credit: Derbyshire Police

But despite using a tennis racket & a wrench he couldn't break the glass. Neighbours also tried to help rescue the children but were beaten back by the smoke and flames.

The charred front door of No. 18 Victory road in Allenton after the fire Credit: Derbyshire Police

Mairead Philpott rang 999 but despite desperate attempts by fire crews and police to revive them, the children died from smoke inhalation.

Duwayne, Jade, John, Jack, Jesse and Jayden all died in the fire Credit: ITV News Central

Days later Mick and Mairead Philpott appeared before the media where police confirmed that petrol had been used to start the fire.

Two weeks later the couple were arrested. On November 5th 2012 their friend Paul Mosley was also arrested.

In December all three pleaded NOT GUILTY to six counts of manslaughter.

Paul Mosley pictured having a cigarette outside one of the early court hearings Credit: ITV News Central

Their trial began on Monday 11th February at Nottingham Crown Court.

A police van arriving at Nottingham Crown court early on in the trial Credit: ITV News Central

Prosecutor Richard Latham QC told the jury the fire was deliberately started by Mick Philpott as part of a plot to frame his ex-mistress Lisa Willis who'd left the family home three months earlier - taking her five children with her.

Court drawing of prosecutor Richard Latham QC Credit: ITV News Central

After Ms Willis left, Mick Philpott told friends and police she'd threatened to kill him and his family,and 'torch' the house.

The prosecution claim this was Mick Philpott setting Ms Willis up, and that he planned the blaze himself with the aim of rescuing the children - and being hailed a hero.

Thus, with the finger of suspicion pointing at Lisa Willis, he'd be awarded custody of their 5 children.

Experts later testified in court that traces of petrol had been found on clothes belonging to the Philpotts and Paul Mosley.

Secret police audio recordings of conversations between the couple at their hotel room and in a police van were also played to the jury.

The hotel where the Philpott’s were put under surveillance after the fire Credit: ITV News Central

On two occasions Mick Philpott was heard to whisper "Are we sticking to the story?"

Their behaviour after the fire was also questioned. Several witnesses said the couple didn't behave like 'grieving parents'.

The mortuary manager at the Royal Derby Hospital described one visit by them to see their children in the morgue..."resembled a circus."

Mick Philpott appearing in the dock at his trial Credit: ITV News Central

Throughout the trial Mick Philpott denied being the architect of the fire. But today a jury decided he was lying. He'll be sentenced tomorrow at 10:30am.

More on this story