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CRIME

Man sets partner alight in Tuscan city centre

A woman is being treated for serious burns after a man threw alcohol over her and set her alight in central Arezzo, Tuscany.

Man sets partner alight in Tuscan city centre
The attack happened just metres away from the city's crowded September fair. Photo: Burgkirsch/Wikicommons

The 49-year-old woman, who is homeless and originally from Romania, was attacked in the town centre on via Mecenate, just metres away from the city's crowded September fair, Corriere della Sera reported on Thursday. 

A man, thought to be the woman’s partner, reportedly doused her in alcohol before setting her alight. Police are now searching for the 60-year-old man, who is also homeless and from Romania.

According to reports, the couple had been arguing before the attack.

After the attack, the badly burned woman reportedly went into a bar to ask for help, saying that her partner had attacked her. The bartender then alerted emergency services.

The woman has been transferred to a burns unit in Genoa where she is said to be in a serious condition.

Reports of women being attacked by their partners in Italy continue to hit headlines.

In March, an Italian lawyer was sentenced to 20 years in prison for hiring two men to throw acid on his former girlfriend's face, severely disfiguring her.

On Tuesday this week, La Repubblica reported that a man in Alatri, south-east of Rome, attempted suicide after stabbing his wife to death following an argument.

And on Monday, a man suffering from senile dementia in Palermo, Sicily, killed his wife using a coat hanger.

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ROME

‘Bank robber’ rescued in Rome after tunnel collapses

Four people were arrested in Rome after a suspected would-be bank robber was rescued from a tunnel under a road, police said on Friday.

'Bank robber' rescued in Rome after tunnel collapses

An Italian man had to be rescued after becoming trapped in a collapsed tunnel near the Vatican, suspected of being part of a gang burrowing its way to a nearby bank.

Firefighters spent eight hours digging him out from under a road in the west of Rome, before he was finally freed on Thursday evening and taken to hospital.

“Two people from Naples were arrested for resisting a public official and two, from Rome, for damage” to public property, a police spokesman told AFP.

The rescued man, one of the two Romans, remains in hospital, he said without giving an update on his condition.

“We are still investigating, we do not exclude that they are thieves, it is one of the theories,” he said.

For Italian newspapers, however, the motive was clear, with reports noting the tunnel was found near a bank ahead of the August 15th long weekend, when residents traditionally head out of town and much of Rome is left empty.

“The hole gang,” headlined newspapers Repubblica and Corriere della Sera, while La Stampa said: “They dig a tunnel to rob a bank, and one of them is buried underground.”

Other reports referred to the suspected burglar as l’uomo-talpa, or ‘mole man’.

An AFP reporter at the scene on Thursday saw the man brought out alive on a stretcher, after a day-long operation involving dozens of emergency service workers using mechanical diggers.

The tunnel began underneath an empty shop that had recently been rented.

“We all thought that the people there were renovating the place. So we had no suspicions and we did not hear noises either,” a resident, Michele, who lives in the same building told AFP.

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