Barbecue buddies face Majorca blaze charges

Three men have been arrested for allegedly starting a major fire in Majorca after a barbecue on Thursday went wrong.

Barbecue buddies face Majorca blaze charges
A member of the UME (Unit Military Emergency) attempts to put out a fire on a mountain near Andratx, Majorca, on Saturday. Photo: Jaime Reina/AFP

Spain's Civil Guard arrested Ignacio G.H on the weekend on suspicion of having started the fire in Majorca.

He spent Monday night in police custody and was expected to appear before a judge as early as Tuesday.

Two other men have also been charged for starting the forest fire. 

Ignacio G.H is the brother of Samuul G.H, in charge of the farmstead where the fire originated.

Samuel was earlier arrested but then freed on bail while authorities continued to investigate the cause of the fire.

Those investigations ended with the arrest of his brother, aged 44, and of two friends, Spain's El Mundo newspaper reported on Tuesday.

Investigators believe the three men were enjoying a barbecue on Thursday at Samuel's farm.

Ignacio and his two friends had then thrown the hot coals over a ploughed field. 

This became the fire that destroyed almost 1,800 hectares of the World Heritage Tramuntana mountains, police believe.

No one was injured in the fires, although one fireman was treated for dehydration.

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Barcelona fire kills four, including two children

A fire ripped through an abandoned bank occupied by squatters in central Barcelona on Tuesday, killing four people, including a baby and a three year-old boy, Spanish firefighters said.

Police and firefighters gather outside an abandoned building where a blaze broke out early on November 30, 2021 in Barcelona, killing four people.
Police and firefighters gather outside an abandoned building where a blaze broke out early on November 30, 2021 in Barcelona, killing four people. (Photo by Pau BARRENA / AFP)

“While we were battling the fire, we found four people. Emergency services tried to revive them but unfortunately they failed, they could not do anything to save them,” the head of the firefighting operation, Ángel López, told reporters.

Firefighters rescued four other people who were inside the building while putting out the blaze, he added.

Those four were treated for smoke inhalation.

Firefighters rushed to the scene at around 6 am after being warned that a blaze had broken out in the building, Mr Lopez said.

While Mr López said it was not clear how the four dead people were related, Barcelona-based daily newspaper La Vanguardia said they were all members of a Romanian family.

A spokesman for Catalonia’s regional police force, the Mossos d’Esquadra, said an investigation had been opened into the causes of the fire.

In December 2020, four people were killed after a blaze ripped through an industrial complex occupied by squatters, many of them African migrants, near Barcelona.

Over 100 squatters were believed to be living in precarious conditions at the abandoned complex in Badalona, a suburban town north of the city.

In addition to the four deaths, more than 20 people were injured in the blaze.