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Wednesday, October 1, 2014

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Kosher restaurant fire may be arson

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Fuego Steakhouse in Montreal

MONTREAL — Arson is suspected as the cause of a fire at a kosher restaurant in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce early on the morning of Dec. 2.

The blaze broke out at the Fuego Steakhouse at 6136 Côte St. Luc Rd., which is certified by the Vaad Ha’ir, at around 4:45 a.m. About 40 firefighters were called in to put out the three-alarm fire.

It was initially thought to be the result of an electrical problem, but investigators reportedly discovered several signs that the fire had been deliberately set.

The fire, which took almost two hours to extinguish, caused an estimated $200,000 in damages.

A man who answered the phone at the restaurant on Dec. 4, identifying himself as the person who runs the business, told The CJN investigators have not confirmed the cause of the fire.

“I cannot assume anything [at this time],” he said, refusing to give his name. “We are waiting for the experts to get the information.”

Fuego opened about 18 months ago, he said.

“We have no clue when we will re-open. We hope to serve our customers soon.”

Last June, two kosher restaurants on Queen Mary Road, Chops Resto-Bar and Café Shalom, were firebombed within two nights of each other.

Although police released video surveillance images of suspects and the owner of Chops offered a financial reward for information leading to an arrest, no one has been apprehended. Police said there was no evidence to confirm that those attacks were motivated by hate.

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