AS the price tag for arson attacks on rubbish containers in Palma soars to almost half a million euros the search for those responsible has stepped up a gear.
National and local police have revealed they are not looking for just one person, but believe there are separate copycat offenders setting fire to council property.
The deliberate blazes – more than 100 in 16 months – are costing the taxpayer heavily and taking firefighters and police officers away from other serious incidents.
Investigators are now examining video footage from the most recent two fires which swept through eight large bin containers and gutted a car in just 10 minutes in Palma.
The fires were reported shortly before midnight on Monday.
The first was at 11.45pm in Calle Bisbe Bernat Nadal and completely destroyed five containers.
Palma firefighters managed to extinguish the flames, but the council property was unsalvageable and crews were quickly despatched to Calle Sant Vicenc de Paul, less than 100 metres away.
Here, a fire had destroyed three more containers and a car which had been parked next to them, as well as two trees and electrical wiring.
Officers from the National Police Group of Attacks and the Local Police of Palma have spent months investigating the incidents.
In January, the National Police arrested and jailed an alleged arsonist, believed to be responsible for several container fires in the area of Playa de Palma.
But officers believe the bulk of the fires are the work of several other people, “imitating the act, probably without connection to each other.”