Photographs have emerged of convicted arsonist Gordon Thompson, looting in London ahead of the massive Croydon blaze that destroyed 140-year-old furniture store, House of Reeves.
Thompson brazenly posed for a photographer during the crime spree and ended up on the front page of a local newspaper. The 34-year-old was jailed at the Old Bailey and will serve 11-and-a-half-years for arson and burglary.
The Metropolitan Police has released images of the devastation following the blaze at House of Reeves furniture store in Croydon during last summer's riots.
Today Gordon Thompsonm of Waddon Road, Croydon, was jailed for 11 and a half years for starting the fire, which destroyed the 140-year-old family business.
Monika Konczyk, who was photographed jumping out a window after the nearby Reeves furniture store was set alight by Gordon Thompson, says she thinks his 11-and-a-half year jail term is "good".
I spoke to Monika in the Poundland store she works at with her sister in Croydon, where she told me she hopes today will be the end of her ordeal.
The photograph of her leaping from a burning building became one of the iconic images of the riots and one of the most critically acclaimed photographs of 2011.
Speaking outside the Old Bailey, Jenny Hopkins, of the Crown Prosecution Service, said Thompson put scores of lives in danger by starting the Croydon blaze, including both firefighters and those living nearby.
Trevor Reeves has said losing his family's 140-year-old furniture shop, which was burnt to the ground during last summer's riots, was like a "bereavement".
Today Gordon Thompson was jailed for 11 and a half years for starting the blaze after pleading guilty to burglary and arson.
This day was a bad day for Croydon and the people of Croydon. Perhaps the most shocking event was that the House of Reeves was set alight and burned to the ground, putting lives at risk.
[ The shop ] had stood on the site for over 140 years, proudly giving its name to its location, Reeves Corner. You were about to bring all that to an end.
– Judge Peter Thornton
This was a deliberate, wilful act of shocking, dangerous vandalism.
Trevor Reeves, the son of the owner of a 140-year-old furniture shop that was destroyed during the London riots, said losing the store was "like a bereavement" during a statement outside the Old Bailey.
Maurice Reeves, whose furniture store was destroyed during the London riots, asked how Gordon Thompson "could do so much harm to so many people" in a statement outside the Old Bailey.
He added that he thought it was "a fair judgment" after Thompson received 11 and a half years in jail.