A HOMELESS drifter is hauled from court yesterday accused of starting a blaze in inferno-ravaged Australia.
Michael Truong, 36, was handed to police by furious bushfire victims in Johnsonville, Victoria, amid online calls to “string him up”.
An angry crowd then threatened him during his appearance at nearby Bairnsdale Magistrates’ Court.
Truong was held by suspicious residents – including a Country Fire Authority captain – who spotted his New South Wales-licensed vehicle near tinder-dry bush.
Locals claimed to have spotted him setting fire to paper in thick scrub, which burst into flames on contact before they managed to extinguish the blaze.
Truong fled but was pursued by the residents who performed a citizens’ arrest and detained him until police arrived.
MOST READ IN WORLD NEWS
Police believe Truong had been living rough in his car for some time and it remains unclear why he had travelled south to the disaster zone.
One angry comment on Facebook read: “String him up out the front of the courthouse”.
At least 24 people have been charged with arson in New South Wales alone since the start of the “fire season” crisis in September.
At least 24 people have been charged with arson in New South Wales alone since the start of the ‘fire season’ crisis in September.[/caption]
Fires continue to burn and wreak havoc across Australia[/caption]
- GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org