Arson charge laid after ‘dream’ destroyed
A MAN alleged to have burnt down a Townsville woman's dream business has been extradited from the New South Wales Central Coast, charged and held in custody.
Anna Ravizza's Railway Estate business Anna's Skin and Beauty was destroyed by fire in the early hours of January 29.
Neighbours were alerted to the blaze by the smoke and flames, but the building, which was insured, could not be saved by firefighters.
Ms Ravizza had operated the beauty salon for 14 months before it was reduced to ashes.
She'd been left "devastated" by the blaze.
Ms Ravizza estimated she'd lost machines and stock worth about $100,000 in the fire.
Townsville police Criminal Investigation Branch detective Senior Constable Rowan Cunningham said a male suspect and vehicle had been identified as being in the area right before the fire broke out.
Investigations tracked the man to the New South Wales Central Coast.
A warrant was issued for the man's arrest and Townsville police, in collaboration with their interstate colleagues, extradited the man back to North Queensland.
He appeared in Townsville Magistrates Court on July 30, facing one count of arson.
He was remanded in custody and was due to appear next on September 27.
Sen-Const Cunningham described the offence as "well planned".
He said the man charged was not known to Ms Ravizza or the building owner Simon Fraser.
Forensic investigations, CCTV and Crime Stoppers informants all assisted police in their search to locate the man and "numerous" detectives were tasked to the investigation.
Arson carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
Ms Ravizza pledged to rebuild her business following the fire and has since reopened her salon in Townsville.
"It's been my dream. I poured my whole heart into this," she said in January.
"I have built up such a beautiful clientele who are so lovely."