A teenager will face court today charged over the alleged multi-million-dollar arson of a shopping complex on the Central Coast earlier this year.
Police and emergency services were called to Ocean Beach Road, Umina Beach, just after 2am on Sunday 13 January 2019, following reports the barber shop was on fire.
The fire quickly spread to neighbouring stores and into the roof cavity, and despite the efforts of Fire and Rescue NSW firefighters, the complex was destroyed.
The damage is estimated to be in excess of several million dollars.
Officers from Brisbane Water Police District established a crime scene, which was examined by specialist forensic officers.
Initial inquiries suggested the fire was deliberately lit using an accelerant following a break-in at the barber shop.
Following extensive investigations by Brisbane Water detectives, a 17-year-old boy was arrested at Woy Woy Police Station about 1.30pm yesterday (Tuesday 24 September 2019).
He was charged with damage property by fire and refused bail to appear at a children’s court later today (Wednesday 25 September 2019).
Investigations into the circumstances surrounding the fire are continuing.
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence.