The factory of Scott Electronics burned down in the middle of the night in what appeared to be a clear case of arson while its owner Hugh Scott was away in London. However he now finds himself in court charged with this offence. The prosecution assert that the business was struggling and he wanted the insurance money; using his electrical knowledge he rigged up a way that a fire could be started remotely while he used his absence as an alibi. However Scott denies the offence. He says anyone with basic electrical knowledge could have devised this means of arson and he has plenty of enemies among his staff who might have been responsible. He also says his business was about to turn the corner and he had no motive for destroying it. Matters take an unusual turn halfway through the case when he dismisses his counsel Patrick Canty and decides to represent himself.