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Suspected arson at Hackney squat fire

November 03 2012
One fatality and three injured, and one man arrested on suspicion

 

A fire at a squat on Lower Clapton Road has claimed the life of Polish national Kzysztof Waleczek. The police and London Fire Brigade are working together to determine the cause of the blaze at the former rehab clinic.

Forty firefighters attended the blaze at 4am on Saturday 4 August. They used breathing apparatus to rescue a man and a woman from the first floor of the three-storey building. The victims suffered smoked inhalation, but were released from hospital later that day.

Two men escaped before the emergency services arrived: one of them jumped 25 feet from a window, sustaining critical injuries; the other got out unharmed. All the survivors are in their twenties.

Though the flames were under control by 8am, the fire crew was still attending to the scene that afternoon.

Mr Waleczek’s body could not be moved until the site was secured three days later. He was discovered to have died from smoke inhalation at the postmortem on the 8th.

A 37-year-old man was arrested for suspicion of arson near the scene the following day. He was bailed to appear at a north London police station in September.

Detectives are still appealing for witnesses and new information about the Lower Clapton Road fire. The police can be reached on 101 and Crimestoppers are taking anonymous calls on 0800 555 111.

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