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Indebted Italian man accused of triggering deadly explosion

Carabinieri officers stand at the entrance of a farm following an explosion in a building in Quargnento, Northern Italy, Tuesday, Nov. 5, 2019. Sky TG24 reported that firefighters were responding to a report of an explosion in a disused section of a farm building in Alessandria province when a second, stronger explosion occurred early Tuesday, killing three firefighters. (Dino Ferretti/ANSA via AP)

ALESSANDRIA, Italy — An Italian prosecutor says a heavily indebted man seeking to make a false insurance claim has confessed to setting off explosions at a farmhouse he owned that killed three firefighters.

Prosecutor Enrico Cieri says Giovanni Vincenti told investigators he meant to blow up his farmhouse in the northwestern region of Piedmont by setting off gas canisters, but he allegedly made a mistake with a timer connected to the canisters and triggered two explosions.

Firefighters went to the farmhouse after the initial explosion early Tuesday and were then struck by a second, stronger blast.

Vincenti was detained Friday night. At a news conference Saturday morning, Cieri said Vincenti told investigators he had no intention of killing the firefighters.

The Associated Press