An arsonist who torched his own home and then tried to frame a neighbour has been jailed. 

Jason Nelmes, 51, was rescued by firefighters from his then home in Orchard Close, Warboys, on the evening of May 31. 

He told firefighters he had been inside searching for his daughter, but he was found to be the only occupant. 

Nelmes was treated for minor injuries and smoke inhalation and told medics he had lived there for four years and had ongoing issues with his neighbour – who he claimed had threatened him just days before. 

The neighbour was arrested on suspicion of arson but was released after evidence quickly came to light indicating Nelmes was the culprit. 

CCTV footage revealed no one else had been near the property before the blaze broke out, and at 7.34pm, flames were seen behind the front door. 

Nelmes was then seen emerging from the side of the property and pausing to look at the front door before walking out of view. 

A few minutes later, video doorbell footage captured him arriving at a friend’s house nearby where his daughter had been since 5pm. 

He was described as being “very on edge” and anxious, and then after receiving a call to say his house was on fire, he rushed back, turning up just before fire crews arrived. 

Witnesses said Nelmes frantically ran into his house as he was worried about his cat, while neighbours battled to douse the flames with buckets of water and a hosepipe. 

Nelmes, of Berkley Street, Eynesbury, was arrested the following day and during police interview, he continued to blame his neighbour. 

However, he later pleaded guilty to arson with recklessness as to whether life was endangered and intending to pervert the course of justice. 

On Monday (December 18), at Peterborough Crown Court, he was sentenced to four years and nine months in prison and handed a restraining order to prevent him harassing his neighbour. 

Detective Constable Tessa Glass-Watson said: “Nelmes’ selfish and dangerous actions showed no regard for the safety of others – he put a lot of people in danger. 

“I am thankful nobody was hurt as a result of his recklessness, and I hope this sentence will put an end to his criminal behaviour.”