Security footage could help solve arson

MYLES HUME
Last updated 11:13 12/08/2014
arson
DEAN KOZANIC/FAIRFAX NZ

FIRE DAMAGE: Ben Milligan checks out a vehicle damaged by heat after his father Dean Milligan's automotive business on Hazeldean Rd was hit by arsonists.

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Security cameras may help find the arsonist responsible for destroying an automotive business that maintains the region's ambulance fleet.

Detective Sergeant Craig Johnson said police were working with up to four businesses on Hazeldean Rd to obtain video surveillance footage which could identify the offender who fled from police after lighting a fire that gutted Milligan Automotive about 5.40am on Sunday.

The business is responsible for maintaining about 100 St John vehicles in Canterbury, and has relocated to Disraeli Automotive to continue operating.

Owner Dean Milligan expects to work out of the temporary premises for the next three months.

Johnson said police were close to catching the offender when a police dog trailed him to a nearby cemetery on Selwyn St shortly after the fire was lit, but the scent was lost.

"We have got assistance from three to four businesses which potentially could have footage of interest to us," he said.

"Unfortunately, due to compatibility of the systems, we are having a couple issues in regard to compiling and reviewing it so it's going to take several days before we can access that."

Milligan estimated the repair bill would exceed $100,000, with three vehicles, car hoists, machinery and stock among the damaged items. The roof was also destroyed by the fire.

Johnson said no-one had yet come forward with information over the incident.

Those with information of interest can contact police on 03 3637 400 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

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- The Press

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