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Devon man sentenced after setting fire to synagogue - and himself

The court heard how Tristan Morgan was spotted walking away carrying a petrol can and laughing Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

A far-right extremist has been sentenced to an indefinite stay at a secure hospital after setting fire to an Exeter synagogue last year.

The court heard how Tristan Morgan was spotted walking away carrying a petrol can and laughing as fire spewed out of the historic building.

The 52-year-old admitted arson with intent to endanger life on July 21 2018.

He also admitted two charges under the Terrorism Act.

The self-styled folk singer set fire to a historic synagogue on a day commemorating the Holocaust. Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

After the far-right extremist threw a piece of lightened paper into the window, he was engulfed in a ball of flames.

According to eyewitnesses, the hospital X-Ray technician appeared "cocky" as he drove off in a Mercedes Vito van.

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The self-styled folk singer set fire to a historic synagogue on a day commemorating the Holocaust.

When firefighters arrived at the scene, they found a "severe" fire in a room containing a gas boiler, which they say could have exploded.

Morgan's van was identified on CCTV, as well as footage of the defendant using a small axe to break a window of the synagogue.

Police arrested him at his home in Alexander Terrace in Exeter. Credit: Devon and Cornwall Police

The court was shown video of Morgan pouring liquid from his green petrol can through the window before he is engulfed in a ball of flames.

Police arrested him at his home in Alexander Terrace in Exeter.

As he opened the door to officers, the defendant, who smelt of petrol and burning, exclaimed: "That didn't take long".

As he was put in a police van, Morgan said: "Please tell me that synagogue is burning to the ground, if not, it's poor preparation."

The Exeter Synagogue, built in 1763, is the third oldest in Britain and remains a focal point for the Jewish community in the South West.

The cost of repairing the fire damage was said to total more than £23,000.