Attack was sectarian: victim

Martin Bradley, with his wife car whcich was scorched inthe the early hours of Monday morning. Martin from Garvagh was able to put it out before any more damage was done.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.

Martin Bradley, with his wife car whcich was scorched inthe the early hours of Monday morning. Martin from Garvagh was able to put it out before any more damage was done.PICTURE MARK JAMIESON.

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THE Garvagh man whose cars were targeted in an arson attack in the town in the early hours of Easter Monday has branded the incident as “sectarian”.

Martin Bradley of Main Street had two cars set alight around 1.25am.

“They petrol bombed both cars - one at the front of the house and another round the back,” Mr Bradley told the Times.

“The one at the back of the house was really only scorch damaged as they threw the petrol bomb below the car but it didn’t go off. It’s really only smoke damage.

“The one at the front of the house had flames coming out of it about 15 feet high in the air. It was just lucky I was able to get water thrown round it. If that had been left another minute the top of the house could have caught fire.”

Mr Bradley praised the Fire Service for coming to the house so quickly.

He said he was lucky that he had not already gone to bed when the incident happened of “it could have been more serious”.

“There is no doubt in my mind that this is a sectarian attack,” said Mr Bradley.

“This has been going on for about three of four years.

“There was a group up burning picnic tables that night and the police were rung an hour before this happened.

“Things are hard enough at the moment without having to try to get two cars back on the road. My wife is devastated as we need the car to take my 17-year-old daughter to and from hospital appointments as she has rheumatoid arthritis and is awaiting a hip replacement operation.”

POLICE in Coleraine are appealing for information about the incident.

A 22-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endangering life. He is currently helping police with their enquiries.

Anyone who has any information is asked to contact police at Coleraine on 0845 600 8000. Or, if someone would prefer to provide information without giving their details, they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800 555 111