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Petrol bomber targeted Fife neighbour after bank card spending spree

Greg Smith admitted petrol bombing his neighbour in Kirkcaldy.
Greg Smith admitted petrol bombing his neighbour in Kirkcaldy.

A Fife man has admitted petrol bombing his next door neighbour after he believed he had ransacked his home and used his bank card.

Greg Smith, 22, created a Molotov cocktail and threw it through the window of his former friend’s home.

He claimed his intended victim had stolen his bank card in a break-in.

He appeared at Kirkcaldy Sheriff Court to admit wilful fireraising on November 9 and later assaulting a police officer.

Petrol bomb attack

The court heard Smith, now of Orchard Grove in Leven, had been living at Caithness Place in Kirkcaldy in 2020 and had become friendly with neighbour Samuel Martin.

Fiscal depute Jamie Hilland said: “Witnesses heard the sound of breaking glass.”

He explained another neighbour looked out their kitchen window and saw Smith standing outside Mr Martin’s window.

“He had his face covered with a scarf and was in the company of another male,” Mr Hilland added.

The witness saw Smith set a bottle of fluid alight and throw it at Mr Martin’s broken window.

Police attended and immediately deduced they were dealing with a deliberate blaze.

They traced Smith who said: “I’m going to tell you everything.

“I’ve taken things into my own hands.

“My neighbour has been ripping the p*sh out of me.

“I petrol bombed the house. It didn’t cause that much damage.”

Stolen bank card

Despite his initial apparent contrition, the following day while he was in a cell at Kirkcaldy police station, he spat on a police force support officer.

In court, he admitted spitting at the officer and setting fire to flammable liquid in a bottle and throwing it at Mr Martin’s window in attempt to set fire to the flat.

His solicitor Alistair Burleigh explained Smith has Asperger’s Syndrome.

“At the time of this particular incident, he had his own tenancy.

“Since, he has returned to live with his parents.

“He had befriended Mr Martin and was a neighbour.

“As a result of the bank card being used, he went to the service station and saw on CCTV that it was Mr Martin who used it.

“His home had been broken into and ransacked.

“He’s aware that all options will be open.”

Sheriff James Williamson deferred sentencing on first offender Smith and ordered a social work report.

He is due back in court on April 8.

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