5 killed in Bocaue fire; foul play eyed

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BOCAUE, Bulacan, Philippines—Five members of a family died in a fire that gutted a house in Barangay (village) Lolomboy here early Sunday, police said.

Also on Sunday, a fireman was injured in another fire that destroyed the public market of Balagtas town.

The charred bodies of Rodolfo de la Cruz, 61; his wife Felicita, 50; their sons, Freian, 16, and Francis, 11; and their granddaughter Chacy, 13, were recovered from the ground floor of their two-story house that was destroyed by fire that started after 1 a.m., said Bulacan Fire Marshal Romeo Rillo.

The victims slept on the second floor of the house, which was completely destroyed by the fire, he said.

Investigators were looking into arson angle but declined to give anymore details.

De la Cruz owned and operated a local furniture shop.

Neighbors told investigators that they did not hear any commotion that might suggest an attempt to flee from the blaze. Rillo, however, said firemen would ask for a forensic examination because the neighbors said the family did not wake up even when they shouted and threw rocks at the house to alert them about the fire.

The body of De la Cruz’s granddaughter was found separated from the other family members.

Rillo said neighbors had told them that the girl went home at around midnight Sunday, accompanied by four men.

In Balagtas town, a fireman was hurt in a fire that struck the public market there shortly after 2 p.m. Firemen from the town as well as those from neighboring areas like San Jose del Monte City and Metro Manila helped put out the blaze.

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