Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Porvoo Fire: Suspects Caught


Helsingin Sanomat reports that several young adults have been caught in connection with the arson attack on Finland's Porvoo Cathedral, which took place early on Monday. From the English-language edition of HS:
According to Chief Inspector Bengt Renlund, the apprehended individuals are suspected of aggravated sabotage. For now, the police are refraining from revealing the exact number of the suspects.

"More than one person has been apprehended. They have all been heard briefly, and the questioning will continue this morning. They are suspected of setting the Porvoo Cathedral fire", Renlund told the news agency STT.

Renlund does not reveal how the suspects were caught. He says the police will release more information on the subject later today.

After yesterday's blaze, all that remains upright of the upper part of the hilltop structure , which for centuries has dominated the Porvoo cityscape, are its blackened gable walls.

The interior of the church, on the other hand, survived the flames largely unharmed, thanks to the structure's thick vaulting and the fact that the fire department used foam instead of water to minimise water damage.

The heavy chandeliers fell down, but the condition of the centuries-old frescoes on the ceiling and the walls will only become evident on Tuesday, or a few days after that.

In any case, the overall cost of the damage is in the millions of euros, reports properties manager Boris Björkendahl from the Parish Union of Porvoo. Restoration work will begin on the building almost immediately, as soon as permission is received from the police.

See also, concerning an earlier fire at the beginning of this month: Helsinki Arson Attack
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