American Renaissance

Appeal Date For Arson Shopkeeper

BBC News, May 14

A shopkeeper who was jailed for four years for setting fire to her own shop in Carmarthenshire and blaming it on racists is to appeal.

Malkit Chand was found guilty of arson following a trial at Swansea Crown Court in January 2003.

The Hill Top Stores she ran with her husband Darshan in Burry Port, near Llanelli, was extensively damaged during the blaze on New Year’s 2001.

Police found racist slogans daubed onto the back of the shop and a swastika had been painted nearby.

Chand maintained he innocence throughout the trial.

The full appeal will be heard in London on 28 May.

Couple Blamed Shop Fire On Racists

The jury was told the store’s windows were sealed up

BBC News, Jan. 6, 2003

A court has heard an Asian couple deliberately set fire to their shop and framed it to look like a racist attack.

Darshan Chand and his wife Malkit are accused of starting the fire just over a year ago at their store in Burry Port near Llanelli, south Wales.

Police found slogans daubed onto the back of the store. A swastika had been painted nearby.

The Chands deny arson with intent to endanger life. Mrs Chand also denies attempting to obtain an insurance payout by deception.

The jury as Swansea Crown Court heard Mrs Chand tried to persuade detectives that she and her husband, both aged 35, had been victims of racists.

Prosecutor Geraint Walters said the couple used their car to remove goods from the store — and had been seen carrying black bin bags out of the premises — before starting the blaze.

He said flames were seen pouring out of the store in Colby Road within 15 minutes of Mrs Chand locking up on New Year’s Eve, 2001.

Firefighters noted that both the front and back doors of the property were still locked and intact, and that no entrance had been available for anyone to gain entry.

The court was told the couple had taken on the shop, Hill Top stores, more than two years previously.

The trial continues.