After his ex-girlfriend dumped him, a man was arrested for attempting to sell her house.


A disgruntled boyfriend was sentenced to prison for attempting to sell his ex-property girlfriend's after she abandoned him and for firebombing a neighbor's Range Rover.

When his relationship with his former lover, Dr. Margit Szel, 70, ended, Graham Harmes, 69, began a five-month surveillance campaign against her.

On several times, he broke into her luxurious seaside home in Dorset, UK, to relocate or smash possessions and steal vital documents.

While Dr. Szel was away, Harmes superglued the locks and arranged for an estate agent to go over the house, take pictures, and list it for sale.

Jennet Bennett, Dr. Szel's next-door neighbour, saw Harmes damage her car and reported it to the police.

Harmes retaliated by setting fire to Bennett's £40,000 Range Rover in the middle of the night, triggering an explosion outside her home.

Harmes pleaded guilty to stalking, arson with reckless disregard for human life, and witness intimidation at Bournemouth Crown Court.

Harmes was sentenced to four years and five months in jail by Court Recorder Robert Weekes QC, with the seven months spent in imprisonment since October taken into account.

Before meeting Dr. Szel, Harmes, a father of three, had been suffering from mental health issues following the death of his wife of 43 years from a brain tumour.

The couple had been together for seven years and had recently purchased a £1 million contemporary home with a view of the sea.

However, by Christmas 2020, the relationship had broken down, and Dr. Szel claimed she informed him he would transfer his portion of their property to her in exchange for her paying him £1,000 a month for ten years.

Harmes objected to this arrangement and kept a key to the house, which he began to use in June 2021, while Dr Szel was abroad on business.

Prosecutor Laura Deuxberry said he let an estate agent into the house on June 7 to examine it and then had him return on June 9 to photograph it.

Before Dr. Szel returned on June 10, particulars were made up and delivered to Harmes, and the house was listed for sale.

'When Dr Szel returned home, she noticed a number of crucial personal documents were stolen,' Ms Deuxberry added.

She returned home two days later to find the locks had been superglued, and she had to spend the night in her car before calling a locksmith the next morning.'

Dr. Szel learned about her house being on the market on June 15 and alerted the estate agents that she had not consented to sell it, according to the court.

On September 21, he returned to snap off her windscreen wiper, which was captured on CCTV and watched by neighbours, and two days later he returned with a ladder and shattered a window to obtain entrance, according to Bournemouth Crown Court.

On October 17, Harmes contacted and left voicemails for Dr. Szel, as well as sending an email that read, 'I have a man following you around at all hours of the day and night.' He not only follows you to work, but he also enters your home while you are not there. He's an old SAS buddy from back in the day.'

Harmes was released on bond on October 19 after being charged with stalking and ordered not to return to the residence.

But, after becoming intoxicated, he stole petrol from an Esso garage and set fire to Mrs Bennett's car using a pair of petrol-soaked shorts he placed under the hood.

A'massive explosion or whooshing noise' and a bright orange light filled Mrs Bennett's bedroom around 1 a.m. When she peeked out the window, she noticed her car had caught fire.

Harmes was suffering from mental health issues at the time, according to the defence counsel Robin Leach, and the property dispute did not excuse his behaviour but did provide some explanation.

In addition to his prison sentence, he was sentenced to pay £650 in damages to Mrs Bennett and £5.80 in petrol to Esso Garage, and he was placed under a restraining order prohibiting him from contacting either victim.


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