BURGLARS raided the ruins of a house destroyed in a gas blast in Poole and stole the victim’s jewellery, a court has heard.

As reported in the Daily Echo, Ian Clowes was last week jailed for five years and four months after blowing up his marital home while both he and his former wife were inside.

Clowes was due to be evicted on the day he triggered a huge gas explosion that ripped the house apart and almost killed both him and his ex-wife Elaine Clowes.

Shortly after the blast, which tore the roof from the property in Sterte Road, firefighters found a red gas cylinder in the defendant’s flat that was ‘still venting’. Clowes later accepted he had ignited the cannister.

Although Mrs Clowes was not seriously hurt in the blast, Clowes himself suffered burns to much of his body. The 68-year-old spent six weeks in a medically-induced coma.

Last week, the defendant was jailed by a judge at Bournemouth Crown Court after admitting arson being reckless as to whether life was endangered.

Mrs Clowes gave a victim impact statement to police, which was read aloud to the court.

In it, she said the crime has hugely affected her life. Some of her most-loved possessions have been stolen from the property since the explosion, she said.

“[Clowes] has shown little regard for me in recent years but I would never suspect he would do something like this,” she said.

“Emotionally I have really suffered with stress.

“I have not been able to search for things that are sentimental to me like jewellery.

“Someone has also now broken into the site and stolen those things.”

A court heard that after the couple’s marriage ended in 2015, their home was converted into two flats. However, Clowes, a house clearer, allowed the insurance on the building to lapse after undergoing “severe financial difficulties”.

As a result, a court order was issued allowing Mrs Clowes, 63, to gain control of both flats.

On the afternoon of October 22 2018, Clowes blew the house up.

In the immediate aftermath of the explosion Clowes was heard to say that he ‘just did not want to be here anymore’, the court heard.

Sentencing Clowes, Judge Jonathan Fuller QC said: “This offence was motivated by a degree of malice. You did not want your wife to get the house that you had bought.

“This was a wicked thing to have done.”