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Saturday, April 14, 2012

Bradford Man Jailed on Arson Charges

A Bradford man is accused of hiring someone to burn property he owns so he could collect more than half a million dollars in insurance.

54-year-old Edward Panighetti is charged with eight felony arson-related crimes.

State Police Fire Marshal Greg Agosti says in a news release that police “intercepted a plan” to start a fire at 103 South Avenue in March and took action to stop the arson. The building owned by Panighetti was occupied by a family of three who didn’t know there was a plan to set it on fire, Agosti says.

Police also learned that a fire at Panighetti’s own house at 102 South Avenue in February of 2007 was intentionally set. Panighetti also allegedly reported that a classic car he owns was stolen. The burned car was recovered in July of last year on the Allegheny National Forest.

The three cases involve more than $574,000 in insurance company funds from three separate companies, Agosti says.

Panighetti was arraigned Friday in connection to the house fires, and is jailed on $200,000 bond. He will be arraigned on the car-related charges on Monday.

Agosti says the charges were filed following a joint investigation involving state police, Bradford Township and Bradford City police and the McKean County DA’s office. He says the investigation is continuing and anyone who has additional information can call him at 814-776-6136.

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