Police have established Strike Force Carpi to investigate bushfires in Sydney’s south-west.
About 2.45pm (Saturday 14 April 2018), emergency services responded to an out-of-control grass fire in the vicinity of Leacocks Reserve, Casula.
The fire had spread significantly through Moorebank, Wattle Grove, Holsworthy and continues to burn in a southerly direction towards Menai and Heathcote.
A crime scene was established and speacilist forensic officers will examine it when it permits.
State Crime Command Arson Unit officers are assisting police from Liverpool Police Area Command to investigate the cause of the fires, NSW Police say.
Police are treating the fire at Casula as suspicious. No injuries have been reported.
Police are also reminding people that they could face penalties if found responsible for the lighting of bushfires – accidental or otherwise.
Penalties relating to bushfires under the NSW Crimes Act, the Rural Fires Act, and Rural Fires Regulation include:
– Damaging property with the intention of endangering life – up to 25 years imprisonment;
– Manslaughter – up to 25 years imprisonment;
– Starting a bushfire and being reckless as to its spread – up to 14 years imprisonment;
– Lighting a fire when a total fire ban is in place – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
– Not putting out a fire that you have lit – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
– Failing to comply with a bush fire hazard reduction notice – up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a $5500 fine;
– Light or use a tobacco product within 15m of any stack of grain, hay corn, straw or any standing crop, dry grass or stubble field – up to a $5500 fine.
Police are urging anyone with information in relation to this incident to call Crime Stoppers.