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Police launch probe to arrest group of arsonists

The Anuradhapura Police Crimes Division has launched investigations to arrest a group of culprits involved in torching several vehicles including a brand new car parked at the residence of a florist in Nirawiya and causing damage to the tune of nearly Rs. 7 million allegedly, to settle a score regarding a mistress.

Police said investigations revealed that a car valued at nearly Rs. 3.5 million, a three wheeler valued at nearly Rs. 700,000 and four motorcycles owned by P. A. Gunadasa (64) of Watavandana Road, Nirawiya, had been thoroughly burnt by the fire which had spread to a room in his house too, destroying several household equipment. The incident had occurred around 2 am on December 4, while the culprits involved had escaped. There is suspicious that a dispute between the florist concerned and his mistress had led to arson.

The victim has said in his complaint that a loud noise in the wee hours of December 14, had awakened him and when he looked out saw a three wheeler parked in the garage on fire.

He quickly went out and tried to pull out the three wheeler from the garage but his attempts proved futile. The fire bad spread to the other vehicles and the adjoining room where his daughter and her infant were sleeping. Although a burning rafter had fallen on to the bed they were sleeping on. They had managed to escape unscathed.

Thereafter, neighbours rushed to the scene and tried to douse the fire before it engulfed the whole house. The Anuradhapura Municipal Five Brigade which was summoned, had helped to put out the fire.

Police said the Florist had five children by his legal wife and the mistress.

There had been a complaint earlier, at the Police station regarding a family dispute. During investigations held into this complaint, the mistress’s party had made a veiled threat to set the florist’s house on fire.