AN employee deliberately burnt out a manager’s company car when both spent the night in staff accommodation at a Ryedale hotel, York Crown Court heard.

Laura Addy, prosecuting, said the two men were part of an agency team called in

to staff a hospitality event at The Feversham Arms in Helmsley.

As the manager slept, Benjamin Jackson, who had been drinking, defied a colleague’s advice urging him to not to drive the car.

The 20-year-old took the keys without permission and drove off.

Fifteen minutes later, having crashed the car and destroyed it by fire, he returned out of breath and asked the colleague to cover for him.

Jackson was jailed for 16 months and banned from driving for 21 months.

He has been in jail since he failed to attend court and was arrested on a warrant in August.

For him, Richard Davies said he had been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactive disorder. “It was extremely foolish and impulsive,” the lawyer said about the crimes.

“He regrets it. He does act impulsively.”

Jackson, formerly of Guildford and now living near Worthing, pleaded guilty to aggravated taking of the car and arson.

Ms Addy said both Jackson and the manager worked for a Liverpool agency supplying staff for hospitality events.

On July 6, the manager parked his Ford Focus at 5pm and put the keys in the communal kitchen of the staff accommodation.

They were still there when he went to bed at midnight.

Jackson picked them up and suggested to the colleague that they go for a ride in the car.

The colleague said no as both had been drinking “for a number of hours”.

Jackson said he was hungry and after Googling for nearby food outlets, set off in the car.

He returned 15 minutes later, saying he had crashed the car.

The burnt-out Focus was found a third of a mile out of Helmsley on the A170. It had been deliberately set on fire.

It was worth about £200 and the contents about £400.

Mr Davies said Jackson hoped to get a job on his release.