BEIJING: A man who started a fire in a karaoke bar which killed 18 people was sentenced to death in a public hearing by Qingyuan Intermediate People’s Court in Qingyuan in Guangdong.
Liu Chunlu, 32, was also deprived of his political rights for life. The migrant worker, was convicted of intentional arson, resulting in several deaths and significant economic losses, said the court verdict.
Liu arrived in the karaoke bar for singing and drinking together with some friends in Yingde, a county-level city under the administration of Qingyuan, at night on April 23. But he became angry after a female staff member surnamed Zhang rejected his advances.
Liu went to his motorcycle parked by the entrance of the karaoke bar and disconnected its fuel pipe and spread gasoline around on the ground. Liu then used a cigarette lighter to set the fuel ablaze, despite pleas from his friends not to, said the verdict.
Flames quickly spread into the karaoke bar and engulfed other motorcycles, blocking the exit of visitors inside.
A total of 15 men and three women were killed in the fire while another three were injured, including one seriously.
Liu fled the scene but was arrested the next day. — China Daily/Asia News Network