Two hard-partying Guyanese men have been hit with attempted murder charges after they copped to setting a fire in a Queens building that nearly killed two elderly residents, officials said Tuesday.
Imran Ali, 23 and Devindra Ramnaryan, 21, both immigrants from Guyana, left a club on Liberty Ave. in South Ozone Park (Queens), New York about 2:30 a.m. on July 23, officials said.
As they were leaving, they became enraged because they thought someone was throwing rocks at them from a nearby rooftop, law enforcement sources said.
After forcing their way inside the building where they thought the attack had originated, they lit a fire in a second-floor hallway – then took off.
Investigators believe they were drunk at the time.
“They were in a club all night,” one law enforcement source said. “I am going to guess they had a few in them.”
Firefighters arrived at the 2-story building near 123rd St. within two minutes of a 911 call, FDNY officials said. They were able to rescue a 70-year-old man and a 75-year-old woman who were trapped inside their apartment.
Both were both hospitalized for smoke inhalation, the officials said. It took 60 firefighters more than 30 minutes to bring the blaze under control.
Ali was arrested by Fire Marshals on July 27, officials said. When he was hauled into Queens Criminal Court prior to his arraignment, he quipped to investigators: “This is the first time I have ever been here when I wasn’t drunk!” a law enforcement source said.
Ramnaryan was nabbed Monday after he returned to the city from a vacation in Mexico, sources said.
Both men made statements to investigators that incriminated themselves in the blaze, the sources said.
“Anyone who sets a fire shows a depraved indifference to human life,” FDNY Commissioner Salvatore Cassano said in a statement Tuesday.
“I commend our Fire Marshals and our entire Bureau of Fire Investigations for tracking down and apprehending these individuals.”
Both men were arraigned on charges of attempted murder, arson, assault and reckless endangerment, officials said. The disposition of the cases was not immediately available.
Source: NY Daily News