AN angry man attempted to torch the car of his former partner's new lover when he flew into a drunken rage.

Craig Roberts was spotted pouring lighter fluid onto the car while trying to set it alight.

And when a young mother attempted to intervene telling him her child was asleep upstairs in a nearby house he replied 'I don't give a f***' before continuing to try to start the fire.

Teesside Crown Court heard how the 45-year-old had been jailed previously for breaching a restraining order banning him from contacting his the victim.

Emma Atkinson, prosecuting, Roberts was seen near to his former partner's home before getting the lighter fuel out of a carrier bag and attempting to set the car alight.

The neighbour alerted the victim and when she confronted her former partner he threatened to torch her car, her mother's car as well as the new partner's car.

She added: "He said 'I'm going to keep doing this to your car and it was me who slashed your tyres."

In a victim impact statement, the young mother who witnessed the arson attempt said the incident had left her scared and upset over her baby's safety.

Roberts, of Beaumont Road, Middlesbrough, pleaded guilty to arson and breach of his restraining order.

Michele Turner, mitigating, said her client had fully accepted his behaviour was unacceptable and had waited at the scene for the police to arrive.

"The reaction of the neighbour and the realisation of his actions came home to roost at that stage," she added. "It was not the most serious of arson attempts."

Judge Stephen Ashurst jailed Roberts for 12 months for the arson with a concurrent four month sentence for breaching his restraining order.

He added: "You were in drink and intent to cause trouble. You were seen by the neighbour and you were seen to put lighter fluid on the car of your former partner's new partner.

"You looked at her and said 'you couldn't give a fuck, she was so concerned she called the police and let the victim know."