03/04/2013 10:43 BST | Updated 04/04/2013 09:19 BST

Derby House Fire: Mick Philpott's Lawyer Says He Is 'A Very Good Father'

A man who killed his six children in a house fire is a "good father", his lawyer has claimed.

Mick and Mairead Philpott were found guilty of manslaughter of the children on Tuesday.

house mick philpott fire

The house was destroyed by the fire

They had been expected to learn their fate on Wednesday, but the Judge, Mrs Justice Thirlwall, adjourned sentencing until 10.30am on Thursday.

Earlier, Anthony Orchard QC, representing Philpott, told the court: "Despite Mr Philpott's faults he was a very good father and loved those children."

He claimed that all the witnesses, even Lisa Willis, Philpott's former mistress, agreed.

"There's no evidence at any stage that he deliberately harmed any of them," Orchard addded.

It was also revealed that at the time Mick Philpott set fire to his house, he was facing a trial over a road rage incident in which he forced a motorist off the road and then punched him in the face.

James House, prosecuting, told the judge how the road-rage attack started when a driver pulled out in front of Philpott's minivan on a roundabout on Uttoxeter New Road, Derby, on November 30, 2011.

The other driver - Jonathan Welam - was with his 13-year-old daughter at the time.


Six children died in the fire

House said the defendant "tailed" his victim's Seat Ibiza, eventually overtaking him, swerving in front of his small car and forcing him to stop.

The two vehicles collided, causing minor damage to the car.

House said Philpott approached the Seat shouting: "I've got f****** kids in the van."

Philpott then punched Mr Welam once, causing "pain and discomfort".

The prosecutor said the driver described it as "a powerful punch" and said he only managed to avoid a second blow by grabbing Philpott.

Philpott drove off saying he would be calling the police.

The court heard Philpott had admitted common assault in relation to this incident but denied dangerous driving and was on bail waiting to go on trial.

Details of the incident were heard by the court as prosecutors went through Philpott's previous convictions.

The judge heard how Philpott was convicted of attempting to murder his girlfriend Kim Hill in 1978, and also attacking

her mother.

Hill said she had been stabbed 27 times. Philpott was jailed for seven years.

The court heard Hill still has medical problem today because of the injuries Philpott inflicted.

His only other significant conviction was when he headbutted a work colleague when he worked at a bakery in 1991.

He admitted assault occasioning actual bodily harm and was given a conditional discharge but was told to pay compensation and costs.

The court also heard Philpott accepted a caution in 2010 when police were called to the house when he slapped Mairead twice in the face and dragged her outside.

House said Philpott's only other recorded offences were relating to driving matters.


Photo gallery Mick And Mairead Philpott Guilty Of Manslaughter Of Their Six Children See Gallery