Wednesday, April 19, 2023

U.S. Attorney Announces Arson Charges Against Two Philadelphia Men For Pizza Shop Fire That Resulted In The Death Of Firefighter Lt. Sean Williamson

The U.S. Attorney in Philadelphia released the below information:

PHILADELPHIA – United States Attorney Jacqueline C. Romero announced that Al-Ashraf Khalil, 29, and Isaam Jaghama, 29, both of Philadelphia, PA, were charged by indictment with one count of conspiracy to commit malicious damage by means of fire of a building used in interstate commerce, and one count of malicious damage by means of fire of a building used in interstate commerce.  Khalil was also charged with one count of wire fraud, and one count of using fire in furtherance of the commission of that wire fraud. 

Khalil and Jaghama are charged with the arson at 300 West Indiana Avenue in Philadelphia on June 18, 2022, which resulted in the death of Philadelphia Firefighter Lieutenant Sean Williamson, and injuries to five other first responders, who were inside the building when it collapsed following fire suppression activities.  Defendant Khalil was the owner of the property at 300 West Indiana Avenue, which contained both apartments and a business.  According to the allegations in the indictment, Khalil and Jaghama set a fire inside 300 West Indiana Avenue so that Khalil could profit by filing an insurance claim related to the fire.  According to the indictment, after the fire occurred, Khalil signed paperwork authorizing an insurance adjuster to file an insurance claim on his behalf.  As alleged in the indictment, this claim was then filed on June 20, 2022.        

If convicted, defendant Khalil faces a mandatory-minimum sentence of 17 years in prison, and up to a maximum of life in prison.  If convicted, defendant Jaghama faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 7 years in prison and up to a maximum of life in prison.   

The case was investigated by ATF Philadelphia and the ATF’s National Response Team, the Philadelphia Fire Department Fire Marshal’s Office, and the Philadelphia Police Department, with significant assistance provided by the Philadelphia Department of Licenses & Inspections. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Amanda R. Reinitz.

An Indictment, Information, or Criminal Complaint is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


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