A TENANT from hell was yesterday (Fri) jailed for 12 years after being convicted of conducting a vendetta against his landlords and then setting fire to the home he was renting.

Father-of-one Joshua Rosenberg, 43, from Kinfauns, Perthshire, bombarded sisters Jill Dunn and Alison Davidson and their lawyer with emails demanding up to £95,000 in compensation just weeks after moving into their property at 8 Strachan Crescent, Dollar, Clackmannanshire.

Rosenberg claimed there was mould and damp in the house, but refused to let an expert employed by them inspect the premises and threatened to report them to the police, the council and health and safety inspectors.

Rosenberg, of Kinfauns, Perthshire, then arranged for the house to be torched on February 20, 2015, and claimed insurance money.

Days before the house was set on fire Rosenberg removed prized childhood photographs and possessions from the house and put them in storage.

Yesterday at the High Court in Glasgow Rosenberg, who has previous convictions in German for fraud and forgery, sat shaking his head as the guilty verdicts were delivered.

Judge Lord Beckett told Rosenberg, who has convictions in Germany for fraud and robbery, that his conduct was “outrageous.'

Lord Beckett added: “Your actions were an affront to human decency and an affront to democracy.”

He told Rosenberg that his threats to the two sisters were: 'downright cruel,” and added: “When your attempt to extort money from them failed you then set up an elaborate insurance scam and destroyed the house which was of great sentimental value to the sisters and their family.”

Rosenberg and his family moved into the house on December 12, 2014, and by January 10, 2015, they were threatening legal action.

The demands started at £3,500 and by February 2015 had escalated to £95,000.

Alison Davidson said in evidence: “I was absolutely horrified. It seemed to have gone from a dispute about conditions in the house to something that was so extreme.

“They were saying they were going to bankrupt us. The whole thing seemed unreal. I was extremely frightened. I had visions of the police coming to my door and taking me away in handcuffs.

“It was horrible, frightening, scary. I felt it was increasingly personal and vindictive.”

Rosenberg, who ran a civil engineering company, continues to deny the allegations.

Rosenberg claimed that the blaze was started by his former friend 76-year-old John Mitchell from Tullibody.

Mr Mitchell, a retired security guard, told the court that Rosenberg made him write the confession.

Roseenberg was found guilty of attempting to extort up to £95,000 from the landlords of the house he was renting in Strachan Crescent, Dollar, and then setting fire to the property on February 20, 2015.

He was also found guilty of obtaining £53,780 by insurance fraud and sending letters to the police, First minister Nicola Sturgeon and Crown Office in a bid to discredit Mr Mitchell and detective constable Christopher Reid, who investigated the fire.

The offences were committed between December 2014 and June, 2018.

Mr Mitchell said: “I was offered £150,000 by Joshua Rosenberg if I would take the blame. If I agreed to do time for him I would only get about three years because I was 72 at the time.”

He told the court that Rosenberg sent a letter to First Minister Nicola Surgeon on February 20, 2018, threatening to blow up the Scottish Parliament and signed it John Mitchell

Prosecutor Alan Cameron asked Mr Mitchell: “When did you first learn about this letter,” and he replied: “When Special Branch came to my house.”

In evidence Rosenburg claimed: “I've been blamed for five years for something I didn't do. It has cost me my marriage, I have lost £350,000.”

He was asked by prosecutor Alan Cameron: “Why did you threaten your landlords saying if they don't pay up you would contact police and the council,” and Rosenberg replied: “It is not threats. It is outlining the course of action I would take. I told them the action I was in the process of taking, I never threatened them. All I wanted was money back.”

When asked if he had anything to do with the fire he said: “No. I lost everything in the fire. I have only two childhood photographs left. All my childhood memorabilia, my stuff from school and business papers – the majority of it – was destroyed.”