The man who confessed to killing a friend he was living with more than 20 years ago has been jailed.

Richard Curtin, of Great Peter Street, Westminster today pleaded guilty to deliberately starting a fire that killed his roommate Paul Smith in 1996.

Initial investigations by police confirmed that the fire in Violet Lane had been started deliberately but found insufficient evidence to charge the now 50-year-old.

Then on October 24, 2017, Curtin contacted police stating he wanted to confess to killing Mr Smith.

He was arrested and charged the following day with manslaughter.

He was sentenced to ten years' imprisonment at today's (March 9) hearing at the Old Bailey.

Detective Chief Inspector Simon Harding of the Homicide and Major Crime Command hoped this brought closure to the victim's family.

"It is over 20 years since Richard Curtin started the fire which resulted in the death of Paul Smith; a significant period of time in which Paul's family have been denied knowing the truth about what happened to him," he said.

"I can only hope Curtin's admission of guilt provides some form of closure for them."