The firefighters intervened Friday, November 25 in the night for a start of fire in the presbytery of the Saint-Pierre and Saint-Paul church, located in the city center of Portel (Pas-de-Calais). One person was arrested and taken into police custody. She was allegedly caught in the act.
The rapid arrival of 19 firefighters on site made it possible to quickly contain the fire and prevent it from spreading to the entire building.
Already on November 12, the doors of the church had already been broken and money stolen, after a first intrusion noted on November 1.
In total, since October 22, no less than six fires as well as attempted thefts resulting in damage have been reported in churches in Boulogne-sur-Mer and its surroundings. This is particularly the case in the sacristy of the Saint-François-de-Sales church in Boulogne, which has already had two fire starts, and in the presbytery of Sainte-Thérèse in Portel.
The search for cash would be the main motivation of the criminal (s), who seem especially interested in locked cabinets. No act of desecration has yet been observed. According to the police, the fires are above all for the perpetrators a means of erasing their traces.