Philpott fire: Day 26 of the Derby trial concludes early after Paul Mosley 'exercises his right to silence' by not entering any evidence
THE case against three people accused of killing six children in a Derby house fire will resume at Nottingham Crown Court on Thursday.
The six Philpott youngsters perished in the blaze at their home in Victory Road last May.
Their parents, Mick and Mairead Philpott, and family friend Paul Mosley, have pleaded not guilty to six counts of manslaughter.
On Wednesday - day 26 of the trial - Ben Nolan QC, for Mosley, told the court his client was "exercising his right to silence" by not entering any evidence.
The trial continues.
Day 26 of the trial:
10.25am: Ben Nolan QC, for Mosley, tells the court he does not wish to enter any evidence.
He said: "He exercises his right to silence."
Justice Kate Thirlwall dismisses the jury until 10am on Thursday.
10.15am: Mairead is briefly in the witness stand for re-examination by her barrister, Shaun Smith QC. After two quick clarifications, Mr Smith says that is the case for Mairead's defence.
On Tuesday, Mairead told the court she could not explain why she had petrol on her leggings and underwear when they were seized by the police after the blaze.
She also said she initiated having sex in public with her husband because it was "the only time he paid her attention".
And she told the jury she felt like "a slave" to 56-year-old Philpott, even though she had previously called him her "guardian angel".
Philpott, his wife and Mosley, 45, of Cecil Street, Derby, deny the manslaughter of the children but the prosecution claims the fire was started as part of a plan to frame Philpott's former live-in lover, Lisa Willis, who had walked out of their house at 18 Victory Road, Allenton, three months earlier.
Philpott was fighting Ms Willis for custody of their four children.
On Tuesday, Richard Latham QC, prosecuting, ran through a possible sequence of events on the night of the blaze that included how Philpott may have set the fire.
Mairead, in the witness box, had already said that when she was awoken by the fire alarm her husband was lying naked next to her in bed, in the conservatory of their home, and she knew nothing of how the fire started.
Mr Latham said: "He would have had to get up without waking you, slide out of the bed, put on some clothes, go through the conservatory, the lounge, slosh the petrol down, climb out of the open lounge window naked, get rid of the canister, climb back in, light the fire, wash his hands in the sink, undress and climb back into bed without waking you before the fire alarm woke you up?"
Mairead replied: "Yes."
Mr Latham said: "How did you get wet petrol on your leggings and your thong?"
Mairead replied: "I don't know."
Mr Latham said: "When you picked up those items off the floor of the conservatory to put them on, did you notice they had wet petrol on them?"
Mairead said: "No."
Mr Latham said: "Did you smell petrol?"
Mairead replied: "No."
Mr Latham then turned to petrol which was found in the U-bend of the sink in the kitchen at 18 Victory Road after the fire.
He put it to Mairead that she would have washed up a lot of items after 4pm on the day before the blaze and tipped the soapy water down the sink. She agreed she would have done.
Mr Latham said: "So how did it come to be that petrol was found in the U-bend?"
Mairead replied: "I don't know."
Mr Latham also challenged Mairead over the police statement she gave to the police about what happened during the 999 call.
She had told them she put on her clothes while on the phone to the operator and also while talking to them managed to climb halfway up a ladder and hand Philpott a monkey wrench which he used to smash a bedroom window.
Mr Latham said: "It is a lie from start to finish, isn't it?
"Where do we hear you, during the first one minute and 40 seconds, call out to your children?"
Mairead replied: "You don't because I was on the phone."
Mr Latham said: "I would suggest that you, during this first part of the call, were incredibly calm. This was all part of the plan"
Mairead replied: "There was no plan, I am telling the truth."
Mr Latham said: "The plan was to blacken Lisa's name and get the kids, wasn't it?
"The three of you (the three defendants) thought this up, it was all planned."
Mairead replied: "No, it was not."
During cross-examination Mr Latham also asked about her relationship with her husband.
He said: "You are not suggesting that you were simply a skivvy or a slave to him are you?"
Mairead replied: "I was more of a slave in a way."
Mr Latham said: "You said (in evidence) yesterday he was your guardian angel?"
Mairead replied: "He was when we first met."
Mr Latham said to her: "Going dogging (sex in public) was your initiation, wasn't it?"
Mairead said: "Yes, because that was the only time he would give me attention."
*THE PHILPOTT TRIAL: Visit our Philpott trial channel here for all related stories in the fire death case.