One suspect detained for Heilongjiang forest fire

One suspect detained for Heilongjiang forestfire

28 October 2007

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China — Chinese police have detained a suspect in connection with a forestfire in northeast China early this month.

Wu Degui, the detained suspect, is a mushroom-picker who is suspected to haveset more than 6,000 hectares of grassland and forests in Yichun city ofHeilongjiang Province, on fire, local police said.

Wu, a migrant worker who was living in a village in the neighboring Heihecity, confessed that he smoked and tossed cigarette butts when he went into theforest to pick wild mushrooms, police said.

The fire was spotted on Oct. 3. More than 4,000 fire-fighters, armed policeand local residents fought against the fire for four consecutive days before itwas extinguished on Oct. 7. The fire ravaged more than 6,566 hectares of land,including 85 hectares of forest.

Chinese law stipulates that those who unintentionally cause a fire could facedetention and even jail terms.

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