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Man arrested after saying he started South African building fire that killed 76 to hide a killing


JOHANNESBURG (AP) — A man was arrested Tuesday hours after he claimed responsibility for starting a building fire in South Africa last year that killed 76 people while trying to get rid of the body of someone he had killed.

The man's apparent confession came as a shock when he was testifying at an ongoing inquiry into the cause of the fire. In a surprise development, he said he had strangled a man in the basement of the rundown apartment complex before setting his body on fire, according to South African media reports of the testimony.

Police said later they had arrested a 29-year-old man in connection with the fire after he had confessed to being involved in the fire at the inquiry. The man, who was not named, was facing 76 counts of murder and 120 counts of attempted murder, and arson, police said in a statement.

The inquiry he was testifying at was established to look into the possible causes of the fire. It's not a criminal proceeding and his confession was completely unexpected.


AP Africa news: https://apnews.com/hub/africa