There has been progress regarding the two police cars set on fire in Molenbeek-Saint-Jean on Friday night, the spokesman for the Brussels Prosecutor’s office revealed late on Saturday. A suspect, an 18 year old man from Molenbeek, has appeared before the judge in charge of the case. He has been placed under arrest, but only in relation to the second fire, a judiciary source close to the case revealed on Sunday. The same source added police had not yet found a clear link to the first fire.
A conviction for voluntary arson that caused serious damage to property could lead to 5 to 10 years in prison. The fact that the fire happened at night is also an aggravating factor.
Two police cars were set on fire in Molenbeek-Saint-Jean on Friday. An unmarked vehicle belonging to the Young offender’s department, which was parked outside the station in avenue de Roovere, was set on fire at around quarter past midnight. Another police car, parked near where an incident had taken place in rue Quatre Vents, had been set on fire earlier that evening, at around 7pm.
Later that night, a father living near avenue de Roovere called an ambulance for his son. The young man’s face was badly burned. The operator alerted police because they suspected a link between the fires and the young man’s injuries. The young man had been to the Sainte-Anne hospital in Antwerp with a friend. Doctors advised him to go the burns unit at Neder-Over-Heembeek military hospital.
However, he went home, where his father called him an ambulance. Police became suspicious when young man told several different stories to explain his injuries. He was taken for questioning, and appeared before the Prosecutor’s office on Saturday morning.