Came to London from Scotland as a teenager in 1980. Eked out a living as a low-paid cutter and presser for a clothing company, and had a drinking problem. In 1994, after a dispute about gaining entrance to a pornographic film theater in London, bought some gasoline from a nearby service station and used it to start a fire in the theater building, which did not meet fire codes. 11 people died as a result of the fire, and Lauwers was tried and found guilty of 11 counts of manslaughter. It also came out that he had previously been convicted for arson when he firebombed a girlfriend's apartment after she broke up with him, though that time no one was inside. He also had a string of previous convictions for minor theft, assault, and criminal damage. Lauwers was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum time of 10 years to be served.
Deaf Crime Casebook, p.160-170.