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Maidstone Magistrates' Court hit by suspected arson attack

By David Gazet

Maidstone Magistrates' Court has been closed after an arson attack.

Emergency services were called to Palace Avenue around 11.30pm last night after a flammable liquid was poured through the front door and set alight.

Two fire engines attended the scene but the blaze had already been extinguished with a bucket of water by the time they arrived.

People waiting outside Maidstone Magistrates' Court were told all cases have been cancelled today

Only minor damage was caused to the door and mat at the front of the building.

A spokesman for Kent Police, said: "The incident is being treated as suspicious and enquiries are ongoing into the circumstances surrounding the incident."

Defendants were not allowed into the courthouse this morning and about 10am court officials said all 64 cases due to be heard today were cancelled. New bail dates have been issued.

Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals service added: “Police are investigating and staff are working to ensure that the court can be opened again to the public as soon as possible."

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