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Thug set girlfriend on fire on the sofa after they had a row

Denied charges: Shaun Thomas PICTURE: SBNA

A TATTOOED thug who threw flammable liquid over his partner and set her on fire after a row at their home has been jailed for life.

Shaun Thomas used a lighter to set the woman ablaze while she was sitting on a sofa — causing horrific burns to several parts of her body.

Her clothing and the sofa were engulfed in flames but she managed to run outside, where a neighbour helped extinguish the fire and call the emergency services.

Thomas, 48, had broken a lock on the back door to try to prevent his victim, who has not been named, escaping the property in Bedford, Bedfordshire, on February 22 last year. Police also found a butane canister with a firework taped to it. Thomas was jailed for a minimum of seven years at Luton crown court on Friday after being found guilty of arson with intent to endanger life following a trial in August.

He was also convicted of attempted grievous bodily harm with intent, actual bodily harm and having explosives with intent.

DC Pawan Nahar, of Bedfordshire Police, said: ‘It is only by sheer luck the victim’s burns were not far worse and a tragedy was narrowly avoided. Wholly dependent on Thomas for her care, she is still struggling with the realisation of how bad this was and how much worse it could have been.’