Telecom mast arson suspects reportedly brothers; Said they didn't do it
Two men arrested separately this week in connection with setting a transmission mast on fire are brothers who have denied any involvement in the case, reported newspaper AD based on sources. One of the two was taken into custody on Wednesday, the other last Friday, over allegations they lit a telecom tower on fire in Dronten, Flevoland on April 10.
Security camera footage allegedly showing one of the two filling up a jerrycan with fuel at a petrol station led to the brothers getting arrest. Jerrycans full of ignitable fuel have been linked to many incidents in a rash of two dozen telecom mast arsons linked to fears and conspiracy theories about the new 5G wireless network.
But Karim, who at age 30 is the older of the two, said they were getting fuel because of a car breakdown. He had called his brother Samir, 24, to help him. Shortly after a stop at the filling station, the mast in Dronten went up in flames.
Both men are from Swifterbant, according to statements from the police, where a mast also was set alight earlier this week. By the time of that incident, only Samir was in custody.
Police would not yet say whether or not the two men are indeed brothers, or whether is any connection between the two at all. "We can't confirm at this time in the investigation if these men were working together," the police told NL Times on Thursday.
The pair make up two of the three culprits who have been arrested so far in connection with the transmission mast fires which have taken place across the country in recent weeks. Police believe arson to be the cause of most if not all of these incidents.
In a statement made on Wednesday following the arrest of the second brother, police called the trend "worrying and unacceptable". Anti-5G demonstrators claim that the wireless network weakens immune systems, and makes people more susceptible to a coronavirus infection.
"The potential impact of the failure of the transmission masts can be significant," they state. "For example, it may have consequences for the coverage of the telephone network and therefore for the accessibility of the emergency services."
"It is therefore very important that the police stop the arson, track down the suspects and possibly expose their network," they added.