Netherfield man Andrew Dmytruk jailed for four years in Spain over hotel fire
A BRITISH man with a mental age of seven has been sentenced to more than four years in jail after he admitted starting a fire in a Spanish hotel.
Andrew Dmytruk, 51, of Netherfield, had been held in a Spanish jail for almost two years on remand after a Benidorm hotel was evacuated.
His case has been taken up by charity Fair Trials International and Gedling MP Vernon Coaker.
Fears for his safety increased after he made an attempt on his life earlier this year.
Mr Dmytruk, who has been on disability benefits for most of his life, was brain damaged after contracting meningitis as a baby.
He was arrested following the December 2010 fire which destroyed a fourth-floor room in the multi-storey hotel in Benidorm on the Costa Blanca.
Eleven people, mainly British pensioners, were treated for smoke inhalation after the Ambassador Playa was evacuated in the early hours of December 21.
Lawyer Marcos Castañer reached a plea bargain agreement with the state prosecutor on Thursday after its previous request for nine years was lowered to four years and four months.
Dmytruk had been celebrating his 50th birthday at the resort with Spanish friends and his 77-year-old widowed mother and life-long carer Doris O'Brien.
She left for the hotel at 2am but Dmytruk stayed out partying and reportedly did not remember returning to their room before the early morning fire occurred.
At the Provincial court in Alicante Dmytruk pleaded to be allowed to serve his sentence in Britain because his mother was ill with cancer and he wanted to be "closer to her".
Earlier this year Dmytruk was found in a pool of blood by a fellow inmate after slashing his throat and wrist.
"He nearly died," said Mrs O'Brien. "It is disgusting. He has never harmed anybody, never been in trouble with anybody," said the retired factory supervisor from Notts.