Businessman ’caused £100,000 damage to high-end hotel room in 90 minutes of siege’

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Ofer Tsofan, 52, allegedly set fire to cushions and towels in suite 212 of the Four Seasons hotel on Park Lane on July 24 last year, Southwark Crown Court heard

Ofer Tsofan is tried

An executive suffering from an acute manic episode caused more than £100,000 in damage to a hotel room during a ’90-minute siege’ at an upscale hotel, a jury has heard.

Ofer Tsofan, 52, set fire to cushions and towels in Suite 212 at the Four Seasons Hotel on Park Lane on July 24 last year, jurors heard at Southwark Crown Court.

Mr Tsofan was seen by security personnel at midday demanding to speak to Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and to have his family flown to the UK from Israel on a private jet, the court heard.

He also told staff to “f**k off,” jurors heard.

Hotel staff called a friend of Mr. Tsofan to help him do a wellness check, but the Israeli businessman only insulted him for two hours until the police be called, the court heard.

Officers arrived around 9:45 p.m. and tried to enter the hotel room as Mr Tsofan allegedly shouted abuse and demanded to see his lawyer.







The Four Seasons Hotel in Mayfair
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Picture:

Richard McComb)








Court heard hotel suffered £100,000 damage
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Picture:

Richard McComb)


Mr. Tsofan then let the officers into the suite, but barricaded himself in a room while setting fires and throwing various objects, including glass bottles and a book on fire, jurors heard.

The Israeli executive wore only black pants and had covered parts of his body in shaving cream.

When Mr. Tsofan was finally arrested and taken to hospital, the extent of the alleged damage was revealed.

Mr Tsofan destroyed three antique Chinese chests, two televisions, a music system, a set of wooden furniture and several glass table tops, the court heard.







Court heard Israeli businessman insult his friend
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Picture:

Richard McComb)


Smoke from the room’s sprinkler system fires causing extensive flood damage was told in court.

Artwork, furniture upholstery and three panels of wallpaper also needed replacing due to ketchup stains, jurors heard.

The total bill was £108,982.85.

An officer was injured after a glass bottle crashed into a door near his face, jurors heard.







The total bill was £108,982.85
(

Picture:

Richard McComb)


Prosecutor Christopher Jenkins said: ‘It is undisputed that Mr Tsofan committed the acts with which he is charged.

“Mr. Tsofan was assisted after these incidents by three expert psychiatrists, in essence all three or less agreed that Mr. Tsofan was entitled to the defense of insanity.

“Mr. Tsofan was in the midst of an acute manic episode.







A Deluxe Room at the Four Seasons Hotel
(

Picture:

Richard McComb)


“There was indeed a 90-minute siege, with Mr. Tsofan barricaded in his room and the police trying to calm him down.”

Shaved-headed Tsofan appeared at Southwark Crown Court wearing a blue shirt and green puffer jacket, as a family member looked on from the public gallery.

Tsofan, of no fixed address, denies arson, criminal damage to property and two assaults by rescuers, namely police, on the grounds of insanity.

The trial continues.


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