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Police seek information to alleged firebug in Tatong

Nine fires were lit at Tatong on Sunday night.

MONIQUE FREER January 10, 2014 8:55am

Benalla police are trying to identify a firebug who lit nine fires near Tatong on Sunday night.

Benalla police Criminal Investigation Unit Detective Sergeant Shannon Murphy said the fires were lit within a 15km area between Jones Rd camping ground and Tatong on Sunday between 10pm and 11.30pm.

‘‘Nine fires within a 15km area is indicative of somebody that has obviously had the intention to start the fires,’’ Det Sgt Murphy said.

‘‘We know that there was no lightning in the area at the time, and witnesses have also observed a suspect.’’

Benalla CIU and Department of Environment and Primary Industries attended the scene on Monday and interviewed witnesses.

‘‘We conducted seed examinations and measurements of each fire and identified that all of them were deliberately lit,’’ Det Sgt Murphy said.

‘‘We’ve spoken to numerous witnesses who have provided a description of a suspect and a vehicle involved.

‘‘We anticipate that with further investigation and by interacting with the community in the next few days, we aim to identify the suspect.

Det Sgt Murphy urged the community to remain alert and report any suspicious activity.

‘‘We take potential bushfires incredibly seriously and we’re very keen to ensure that the community is not affected by bushfires or irresponsible behaviour of fire lighters,’’ he said.

Anybody with information is urged to phone Crime Stoppers on 1800333000.

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