Dagenham Market trader who allegedly torched a £260k Ferrari appears in court

Jurors were shown this photo of the burned out Ferrari in the drive of a home on Nelmes Crescent, Em

Jurors were shown this photo of the burned out Ferrari in the drive of a home on Nelmes Crescent, Emerson Park in September 2016. Photo cedit: Jaimee Spraggon - Credit: Jaimee Spraggon (taken from Twit

A Dagenham Market trader didn’t torch a £260,000 Ferrari because he was suffering from a broken ankle ‘after falling off his van while fixing an aerial’, a court has heard.

Snaresbrook Crown Court. Picture: Ken Mears

Snaresbrook Crown Court. Picture: Ken Mears - Credit: Archant

Wasim Ahmad Mir, 47, of Cranley Drive, Newbury Park, told a Snaresbrook Crown Court jury yesterday he slipped and fell after fixing the aerial on his transit around the time of the blaze on September 7, 2016.

However, Usha Shergill, prosecuting, alleged Mr Mir broke his ankle when he fell climbing a wall at the Emerson Park home of Raja and Angela Bassi before setting the car alight.

She said he was angry a property deal had gone wrong and wanted to teach a lesson to Mr Bassi who as at that time a director at the estate agent’s handling the sale.

“That’s not true. That never happened,” Mr Mir said.

Charles Conway, defending, said Mr Bassi was trying to set his client up after he threatened to sue the Ilford estate agent’s, ABC Gone, for £500,000 over the botched sale. Mr Bassi is no longer a director of the firm.

Ms Shergill told Mr Mir: “You have put to the court a fanciful and far-fetched explanation. Mr Bassi never set you up. You were responsible for the fire.”

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The married father-of-four denied pouring a jerry can of petrol over the bonnet and leaving behind the container and a box of matches saying they were planted at the address in Nelmes Crescent to frame him.

Only his DNA was found on both.

The court heard Mr Mir’s van broke down in Marksgate on the evening of December 6.

The Ferrari Spider was on fire at about 3am the next day.

Phone records showed Mr Mir called his mechanic, Clive Norman, at 1.11am and 1.14am before he arrived.

They showed Mr Mir also called his sister, Arsha Butt, at 3.55am after he said his ankle was broken. His twin brother drove him to the Royal London Hospital.

Ms Shergill questioned Mr Mir why he would fix the aerial at night.

Mr Mir said: “I’m a hands on person. I thought as Clive was fixing my van I might as well fix the aerial.”

Mr Mir pleads not guilty to one count of damaging property and being reckless as to whether life was in danger and a second count of arson.

The trial continues.