A CLEANER has been cleared of starting fires in bins around Portsmouth.
Henry Gorman, 38, was accused of starting a fire in a bin in Derby Road, North End three times on different nights last September and starting a fire behind Pompey Kebab House in Kingston Road last October.
We certainly do not find sufficient credible evidence that you lit the firesPeter Radley
But Mr Gorman, who works as a street cleaner for Colas, was found not guilty at Portsmouth Magistrates’ Court.
Barrister Richard Withey, prosecuting, said Mr Gorman lit the fires before his morning litter-pick, which started at 5am.
But Mr Gorman of Bishop Street, Portsea, said he often started early to ‘get ahead of himself’ and so was near Derby Road when the fires there were lit just after 4am.
Magistrates were shown CCTV footage of a figure walking along London Road in North End, and in Derby Road, around the time of the fires, and Mr Gorman confirmed the figure was him, having started work early, but denied starting the fires.
There was no evidence of Mr Gorman at the scene of the fire near the kebab house.
Lead magistrate, Peter Radley, said: ‘We certainly do not find sufficient credible evidence that you lit the fires and therefore committed arson.’