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FRANCE

Man charged with arson after deadly Paris fire

A Paris firefighter at the scene of the fire in the 18th arrondissement
A Paris firefighter at the scene of the fire in the 18th arrondissement Reuters/Charles Platiau
1 min

A man has been charged and remanded in custody in connection with last week's fire in Paris that claimed eight lives. He is reported to be a drifter with a history of psychological problems.

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The 36-year-old man, who was detained near the scene of the fire on Wednesday, has been charged as part of a criminal investigation launched by police.

He had a candle and a cigarette lighter in his possession when he was picked up and investigators have CCTV footage of him going past the building several times, although not entering it, sources said.

The bodies of a 63-year-old man, his 44-year-old wife and two children of eight and 14 were found in one apartment on the fifth floor of the building, according to the source.

A sixth body was found on the staircase and two people died after jumping out of windows to escape the blaze.

Four people were injured.

The suspect denied being the arsonist when questioned but apparently confessed to a psychiatric nurse on Thursday.

Investigators started a criminal investigation because firefighters were called out to two separate fires, two hours apart, in the same building.

The blaze was the most deadly in Paris since 2005, when several fires claimed about 50 lives.

 

 

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