Accused of 14 incidents, the 58-year-old was in court earlier this week.

04-06-2019Alejandro Sepúlveda

The 58-year-old who was arrested last Sunday in connection with acts of firestarting in Palma is one of the co-owners of the Lluis Sitjar Stadium, former home to Real Mallorca. He is understood to own various properties in the city.

A resident of Pere Garau, he is said to have started fires in rubbish containers out of revenge against the Palma police force. He maintains that the police had been persecuting him and his dog. He has been fined on various occasions for not having the dog on a lead.

Accused of having been responsible for fourteen incidents in different Palma neighbourhoods, he was detained on Sunday evening. A search of his home revealed two packs of tablets for starting fires and six boxes of matches. In all, the police have charged him with having damaged 36 rubbish containers, eleven vehicles and the fronts of four buildings. He was placed on remand after appearing in court.

Inspector Eduardo Pérez is the new chief of the National Police's robbery squad in Palma. He was faced with dealing with the wave of deliberate fires as part of the squad's remit. He explains that it has not been easy tracking down those responsible, but cameras installed in areas where there have been fires and a series of surveillance operations have produced some success, as with the arrest on Sunday. The accused had his hands inside a container and was on the point of using a lighter to spark off a fire. He was detained in the act.

Inspector Pérez adds that the 58-year-old was one of the more active of the pyromaniacs who have been causing fires for some eighteen months. He has no connection to three others who have been arrested, and the police are absolutely certain there are more.