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Melbourne Priest on Trial for Arson

on 2000/11/16 8:47:02 ( 1679 reads )

Source: Australian Associated Press, November 14, 2000

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA: Subramaniya Punutharajakurukkal, a priest originally from Sri Lanka, is standing trial in Melbourne, for arson and two charges of endangering life. He is charged with setting two mysterious fires at the Hindu temple in The Basin, east of Melbourne on the night of March 11, 1999. The Crown Prosecutor, Geoff Horgan, told the jury the priest used lawnmower fuel to start the fires, which included his residence beside the temple where his wife and child were sleeping. Horgan said the man wanted to stay in Australia permanently and to remain priest at the temple. But, he said, "historically there had been disharmony within the managerial affairs of the temple." The priest has pleaded not guilty.

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