Man arrested for fires in church on South Island



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One man was arrested for two fires in churches in the South Island.

The two Mormon church buildings on opposite sides of the island were hit by suspicious fires two days apart in mid-March.

A police statement said a 28-year-old man was due to appear in Christchurch District Court on Tuesday, charged with two counts of arson.

One man was arrested in connection with the criminal arson of two Mormon church buildings.

JOSEPH JOHNSON / STUFF

One man was arrested in connection with the criminal arson of two Mormon church buildings.

The first fire took place in a church building in Riccarton Superior, Christchurch, at about 2:15 p.m. on March 11. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has used the building as an educational institution for students of higher education.

CONSULT MORE INFORMATION:
* Police will investigate possible link between fires in two churches in southern island
* Two Mormon church buildings hit by suspect fires
* The Mormon church building in Christchurch damaged in suspicious fire

A closed internal door prevented much damage by isolating half of the building.

The damage to the church in Greymouth.

JOANNE CARROLL / STUFF

The damage to the church in Greymouth.

The second fire broke out at the church building in Greymouth on March 13 at 2:15 p.m. He destroyed the chapel and caused enough damage to the building to require demolition.

At the time, Fire and Emergency New Zealand fire investigator Sam Bugler said the fire destroyed about half of the church.

The church managed to salvage some of the manuscripts and technology books, but the chapel and kitchen were destroyed.

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