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arson,

at common lawcommon law,
system of law that prevails in England and in countries colonized by England. The name is derived from the medieval theory that the law administered by the king's courts represented the common custom of the realm, as opposed to the custom of local jurisdiction that
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, the malicious and willful burning of the house of another. Originally, it was an offense against the security of habitation rather than against property rights. Thus, a tenant could not be convicted of arson for burning the house that he rented from his landlord. Although this rule still holds in some states of the United States, in many others statutes have changed the meaning of the offense. Its application has been extended to buildings, structures, and vehicles that are not dwelling places, and greater stress has been placed on protection of property rights. Some statutes distinguish several degrees of arson, e.g., arson committed at night is considered more serious than arson committed in the daytime. In most states setting fire to one's own property to defraud an insurance company is specified as arson.

arson

Criminal law the act of intentionally or recklessly setting fire to another's property or to one's own property for some improper reason
References in periodicals archive ?
CONCERNS have been raised about the huge rise in arson incidents in Kirklees over the past year.
The paper said six people were arrested last year and 11 in 2018 in connection with arsons cases.
Arrow (1963) first speculated that economic factors may lead some homeowners to commit arson on their own property due to moral hazard.
Ten others pleaded guilty in 2007 to conspiracy and arson and were sentenced to prison terms ranging from just over three years to 13 years.
* In 2012, 15,656 law enforcement agencies provided 1-12 months of arson data and reported 52,766 arsons.
A COVENTRY councillor is calling for action after fire crews were called to almost 300 incidents of arson in his ward last year.
We consider two measures of arson. "Arsons" are fires determined to have been set deliberately.
ARSON investigators in the Midlands are helping to extinguish the problems caused by teen firebugs.
The percentage of arsons in 2005 that included mobile property such as motor vehicles and trailers.
Urban areas including Nether-ton, Litherland and Bootle are some of the worst-hit for arson attacks, but rural tracks and grasslands in West Kirby suffer from repeated attacks in the summer months.
Additionally, in 63 percent of the arsons by juveniles, a match or lighter served as the source of ignition.
A joint arson reduction strategy has been launched by the police, fire and rescue and local councils to drive down arson and anti-social behaviour in County Durham and Darlington.