Brooklyn landlord Rafiqul Islam has been arrested on charges of arson and attempted murder after allegedly setting fire to his own building in the Cypress Hills section of Brooklyn. The incident occurred on September 26. Fire marshals investigating the case revealed that Islam was reportedly angered by his second-floor tenants’ refusal to pay rent and vacate the premises. He allegedly set fire to an interior staircase at the Forbell Street building.
During the fire, two adults and six children were inside the building. They managed to escape to the roof, where neighbors and firefighters on the ground assisted in their rescue. The children were caught by neighbors, while the parents jumped to safety. Fortunately, no injuries were reported.
Investigators reviewed security footage from the area for four weeks before identifying Islam, who was seen wearing a hood and mask. The arrest has surprised some neighbors, who described Islam as someone who typically walked around the neighborhood and tended to his properties.
The case against Rafiqul Islam is ongoing, and he will face charges of arson and attempted murder in relation to the incident.