A woman jailed after an arson attack that killed a mother and two daughters has been freed.
Annette Hewins, 32, and her niece Donna Clarke, 29, were convicted of arson with intent to endanger life by Cardiff Crown Court in 1997. Both convictions were overturned. Clarke, who received a 20-year sentence, now faces a retrial on the same charge. She was refused bail.
But the Court of Appeal freed Mrs Hewins, who had been sentenced to 13 years’ jail for allegedly supplying the petrol for the attack. Referring to Mrs Hewins, Lord Justice Kennedy said “there was no sufficient evidence to prove the case against her, so in her case it would not in our judgement be right to order a retrial”.
Diane Jones, 21, and her daughters Shauna, 2, and 13-month-old Sarah-Jane died in the arson attack on their council home in Merthyr Tydfil, south Wales, in October 1995.