Man sets fire to casino hotel after losing money
July 4, 2024 01:04pm

A man in his 50s is being investigated for arson after he set his hotel room on fire at the Kangwon Land Casino report in Gangwon Province, local police said Thursday.

The suspect identified as a Chinese national told police that he set the fire because he was angry after losing a lot of money at the casino, according to the Jeongseon Police Station. He is suspected of starting the fire in his 14th-floor room of the hotel at around 2:31 a.m. on Thursday, and fleeing the scene.

Hotel sprinklers extinguished the fire in 10 minutes, but six guests inhaled smoke and were given oxygen by rescue workers.

Police caught him hiding out in a nearby building four hours later, after checking security camera footage. Officials are conducting further investigations on the case.

South Korean law bans gambling, except for small bets placed for fun and a few facilities authorized by the government. The country currently has 18 authorized casinos, of which Kangwon Land is the only one accessible to both South Koreans and foreign nationals.