QFES and QPS disagree on bushfire arson charges
Chief Superintendent of Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Jeff King appears to have jumped the gun after he confirmed that charges had been laid in relation to a bushfire in the Rockhampton area, however the comment was quickly denied by the Queensland Police Service.
At a press conference yesterday Jeff King said that while all fires are still under investigation he believed that arrests had been made in relation to a bushfire in the Rocky area.
"All the fires are still under investigation at this point in time, however there is a couple of suspect fires...” he said.
"I'm very confident [that charges will be laid]...it's my understanding that there's a couple of people that have been charged already over one of the fires. We need to get the message out there that you can't just go burning off paddocks without taking the appropriate and necessary precautions.”
While Mr King was quick to comment, Acting Inspector of the Rockhampton Police district, Cameron Barwick refused to comment on the state of the ongoing investigation.
"I can't at this stage, but obviously there are quite serious penalties involved with these sorts of investigations” he said.
No other information relating to any ongoing or finalised arson investigations was given, however on Wednesday a spokesperson from the QPS said Mr King's claim was false.
"Rockhampton police have not arrested or charged anyone in relation to the recent bushfires,” they said.
Both Mr Barwick and Mr King were at the press conference to relaunch Taskforce Vulcan, with the QFES, QPS and Queensland Parks and Wildlife Services working together to combat arson in Central Queensland.