PORT OF SPAIN –– When burglars at a warehouse in Siparia failed to steal hundreds of thousands dollars in goods early yesterday, they then set the building on fire, causing more than $2 million in damage.
According to reports, firefighters from the Siparia Fire Station responded to reports of a fire at the warehouse of Harry’s Global Imports on Quinam Road, Siparia, around 6:10 a.m. yesterday.
When the officers arrived the building was already on fire.
According to officials, there was approximately $1 million worth of televisions, refrigerators, small appliances and furniture in the building, which was itself valued at $1 million at the time.
A forklift, a Nissan Bluebird Sylphy and two three-tonne trucks which were also in the building at the time were also destroyed.
Preliminary investigations revealed that a hole had been cut in steel mesh between the walls and roof of the building.
Before the fire, the thieves loaded the two trucks and the car with stolen goods and then tried to break down the double steel gates at the building’s entrance using the forklift.
The gates did not fall, but were slightly bent at the point of impact.
When investigators ventured to the side of the building, there were several empty television boxes in the grass, leading them to believe the thieves resorted to taking items through the gap they had entered after they failed to break down the gates.
The building was then set on fire.
Nothing was recovered from the building and fire officers present said they would have to wait until the ashes cooled before venturing inside to conduct their full investigation.
Billy Harry, owner of the warehouse was at the scene but declined to give any details about the blaze. He said he would wait until fire officers had finished their investigation before making any statements. He did reveal the building was insured, but lamented that he might not be able to recover the full value of his losses.