Teens Responsible For Tahfiz School Fire Show No Signs Of Remorse

The suspects are between the ages of 11 and 18.

Cover image via Media Viral/Harian Metro

The fire at Darul Quran Ittifaqyah (DQI) tahfiz school last week claimed the lives of 23 people

The blaze, which broke out at around 5.15am on 14 September, killed 21 students and two teachers at the school. The youngest victim was only six years old.

Two days after the incident, the authorities arrested seven teenagers who allegedly set fire to the school to assist in investigations

Screenshot from the CCTV footage showing a person sneaking into the tahfiz school at about 3am on 14 September, about two hours before the fire started.

Image via New Straits Times

The teenagers aged between 11 and 18 were picked up by the authorities on Saturday, 16 September.

According to a report by New Straits Times (NST), the teenagers did not show any sign of remorse for committing the heinous act.

"It's like they did not have any remorse. The teenagers did not even say that they were sorry for having caused the tragedy.

"All of them just looked down most of the time when being questioned about the incident. Maybe they had accepted that they were in the wrong. There was no crying whatsoever to show that they felt sorry, even the young ones," sources told NST.

Initial investigations revealed that the suspects had set fire to the school as an act of revenge on the tahfiz school students, following a recent dispute

Kuala Lumpur police chief Datuk Amar Singh during a press conference on the tahfiz school case on 16 September.

Image via Ida Lim/Malay Mail Online

"The incident's motive is believed to have arose from a misunderstanding after teasing between the suspects and a group of residents at the tahfiz school’s hostel that started few days before the incident. Further investigations are ongoing.

"Maybe because of their age and maybe because of their level of maturity, they did not know their actions would cause the final result," said Kuala Lumpur police chief Datuk Amar Singh, in a report by Malay Mail Online on 16 September.

He also confirmed that with the arrests of the seven teenagers, the case has been declared as solved and the authorities will not be arresting any other suspects.

Meanwhile, sources told NST that the suspects are children of immigrants who were born in Malaysia

"From what we (residents) understand, most of them are children of immigrants who had made Dato' Keramat their home. The kids are born here but they don't go to school.

"Those arrested are from around this neighbourhood. I have seen them here many times, riding their motorcycles," one of the residents told NST. He recognised some of the suspects as the teenagers who usually loiter at Taman Tasik Dato' Keramat, which is right behind the tahfiz school.

Another resident, 55-year-old Almy Zubir, said that he had seen a few of the suspects who usually frequent the lake area in the neighbourhood.

"There hare many school students playing truant at the lake. Often, I saw them hanging around the park and sometimes at my flat area nearby. We had many break-in cases, which residents here believed were committed by naughty kids who hang around here until early morning.

"However, I still could not see how these kids, as young as 11, are capable of this (burning down a school and cause deaths)," he said, as reported by NST.

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