A 38-YEAR-OLD man was arrested midday on Wednesday in connection with two fires which were maliciously set at the offices of Paphos social insurance department and the town hall earlier in the morning, according to a municipality spokesman.
“The police are currently investigating the attacks, but it seems that a former municipality employee, in his 40s, has been arrested in connection with setting both of the fires,” he told the Cyprus Mail:
The spokesman said that the man had been arrested for similar instances in the past.
“Thankfully nobody was hurt at the municipality and the damage is minimal.”
Firefighters sped to put out the fire, which broke out at about 6.50am on Wednesday. Police investigations at the scene indicated the fire had been started deliberately and testimony arose pointing to the involvement of the 38-year-old who was arrested and detained following the issue of a court warrant.
Damage was incurred to office furnishings, the air conditioning system, books and stationery, and a rear window.
The spokesman said that it appeared that the perpetrator threw a type of makeshift Molotov cocktail through a rear window of the town hall which faces the public garden.
“The cleaner came in to start work and noticed the fire and smoke in the office just after 7am,” said the spokesman.
She immediately alerted the fire services and the police who quickly attended the scene. The emergency services managed to extinguish the fire before it could cause any real damage or spread to other areas of the town hall, he added.
Earlier in the morning, just before 5am, two fire engines attended a fire which was set at the Paphos social insurance offices, and police believe that both were started by the same person, as both had similar modus operandi.
The fire caused damage to equipment and documents and much of the building, which also houses the labour offices, was affected by smoke.
Both of the crime scenes were cordoned off whilst police officers collected evidence to substantiate the cause of both fires.