By Latrishka Thomas
Suspected arsonist Tianzhao “Alex” Feng appeared before Magistrate Conliffe Clarke yesterday and was told that his committal hearing will be delayed until next year.
The 29-year-old had been missing for several days after the XPZ Supermarket where he worked went up in flames in the early hours of June 1.
After being arrested and charged with burning down the Sir Sydney Walling Highway store, Feng made his first appearance in the St John’s Magistrates’ Court in June.
His application for bail was denied after the prosecution argued that Feng, who was unrepresented, presented a flight risk and he was remanded to Her Majesty’s Prison (HMP) pending his committal hearing.
But yesterday, the hearing was pushed back once again until January 26.
On that day, the magistrate will determine whether there is evidence of sufficient weight to support a conviction in the High Court.
The former supermarket employee’s bail application was reviewed on June 23 after his status in Antigua and Barbuda was verified by the Immigration Department.
The Chinese national was remanded back to HMP since the requirements to consider his bail were not met because he did not have his passport or anyone in Antigua and Barbuda who could stand as his sureties.
It was also revealed that his time in Antigua and Barbuda had expired.
The XPZ store opened in 2018, selling everything from food and clothing to household items and toys. Its destruction left almost 60 staff out of work.