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Man arrested during investigation into Newham and Waltham Forest church fires

A 27-year-old man has arrested by detectives investigating a series of fires in Newham and Waltham Forest.

The man was detained on Monday evening on suspicion of burglary and possession of a bladed article and further arrested on suspicion of arson and criminal damage.

The fires are being treated as suspicious and the incidents are being investigated by the North East area’s Community Support Unit, who are keeping an open mind as to the motive and whether there is any hate crime element to the incidents.

On 19 June around 10am police were called to outside a church in the Broadway in Stratford. It’s believed sometime between 7pm and 8am a fire had taken place and caused damage to the front door of the Church. By the time police had been called the fire had been extinguished.

There was then a further call to police at 10.26am on 19 June to reports of a fire outside a church in Cann Hall Road in Leytonstone which was put out by the caller.  When police arrived they found Graffiti scratched onto the church door.

Later at 9.11pm police were called to reports of a fire outside a church in Ramsay Road in Leytonstone where graffiti was also found on the door.

Following this at 12.14am on 20 June police were called to reports of a fire outside a church in Dyson Road in West Ham where again graffiti was found on the door.

Enquiries into the full circumstances continue by CID and Community Safety Unit detectives.

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101 quoting CAD2459/19JUN or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously via 0800 555 111.

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