Arsonist, aged 13, tells police “I like seeing my dad put out fires”

In the aftermath of a non-stop week of forest fires a 13-year-old has admitted that he set light to trees near his home because he liked to see his dad put out fires.

Even worse, he told police that when he grows up he would like to be a fireman.

The tragic insight into the kind of mentality that has prompted over 2,100 fires in the last 10 days has been revealed as police start to hone in on a few of those responsible.

While the 13-year-old has been the subject of “precautionary and educative measures”, two bricklayers – both acting under the influences of alcohol – have been arrested in Penacova and Tábua both suspected of setting light to countryside areas, and in Mirandela a 39-year-old man has also been charged with arson.

According to data for this year, there have been 72 arrests since January for arson.

Meantime, the fire situation is “much calmer” across the country, mainly due to rainfall in the north and a drop in temperatures.

Yesterday (Wednesday) nonetheless saw 124 fires, almost all of them in the districts of Viseu, Guarda, Viana do Castelo and Braga.

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