12/03/2012 05:41 EST | Updated 12/03/2012 05:56 EST

Michael Kevin O'Reilly Pleads Guilty To Arson In Kelly-Ramsey Block Fire Edmonton


A man has pleaded guilty to starting a fire in the Kelly-Ramsey block in Edmonton that caused $3.5 million in damages and destroyed businesses in the historic building, the Edmonton Journal reports.

The fire was started by Michael Kevin O’Reilly on March 24, 2009 by using a malfunctioning torch to light a cigar, the Edmonton Journal says.

He was a tenant of the building and broke into the owners office and smoked cigars using a malfunctioning torch which lit papers on a desk, the Edmonton Journal added.

"That led to the torn papers catching fire and the ensuing blaze spread across the fourth floor," said Crown prosecutor Neil Wiberg to the Edmonton Sun, adding that citizens noticed the flames and called firefighters.

The incident did not cause any injury or loss of life, the Edmonton Sun adds.

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