Chile charges man in deadly arson attack

Updated at: 01/11/2013 1:07 PM
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(AP) SANTIAGO, Chile - Chilean prosecutors have charged a man for an arson attack that killed an elderly couple last week in a conflictive indigenous region.

Prosecutors on Friday charged 26-year-old Celestino Cordova Transito with arson leading to death. The a Mapuche Indian was also ordered held pending trial.

Werner Luchsinger and his wife, Vivian Mckay, died in the fire trying to defend their home on Jan. 4. The family’s vast landholdings had been targeted by Mapuche Indians who claim the Araucania region as their usurped ancestral home.

Luchsinger fired a gun in self-defense and struck Cordova before his home burned to the ground.

Cordova was detained near the scene of the crime and was held under arrest in a local hospital, where he was treated for a gunshot wound in the neck.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)