Four men are being hunted by police authorities after having destroyed a bar in Vilamoura. The suspects doused the establishment with gasoline and set it on fire on Sunday evening at a time when dozens of people were inside.
Clients and employees were able to escape ‘The Funky Dogo’ before the flames engulfed the establishment. More than 10 people had to receive medical assistance for smoke inhalation.
The men, wearing hoodies, spoke English and entered the bar armed with batons, a GNR source said.
Authorities were alerted at 6.50pm. Firefighters were able to keep the flames from spreading to the rest of the Olympus Hotel, which is in the same building as the bar.
There are reports that the fire may have been motivated by an “argument” that had taken place at the bar the day before.
Speaking to CNN Portugal, the bar’s manager said he had no doubts the attack was “premeditated”.
“Four men carrying four canisters of possibly fuel entered the bar and told everyone who was inside to leave before starting the fire and fleeing,” the manager said.
The fact that they ordered people to leave the bar is being interpreted as a sign that their goal was to cause damage to the bar, CNN Portugal adds.
The investigation is now in the hands of PJ police who were at the scene on the night of the fire as well as the following day collecting evidence.