Melbourne: Man doused himself with petrol in act of protest in foyer of Immigration building

5 August: A man has been taken into custody after dousing himself with petrol in the foyer of a CBD building.

The man, who was in the foyer of the Casselden Place building, which houses the Department of Immigration and Citizenship and the Australian Tax Office, had been speaking with police negotiators before he was arrested about 5.40pm today.

It is believed he was protesting a government department within the building at the corner of Lonsdale and Spring streets.

Witness Andrew Marshall said he saw a translator frantically trying to calm the man, just before a CriticalIRT officer raised his weapon.

Man doused in petrol

“He did fire it at him; you could hear the boom go off,” Mr Marshall said.

“It looked like they used beans or rubber bullets to restrain him, because after that it was all over.”

The man was removed from the site in custody by a CIRT officer and flanked by two other police members around 5.50pm.

He was placed in a waiting ambulance and driven from the scene.

Police officers took the man to an ambulance and he was taken to hospital after a stand-off lasting more than two hours.

The area was cordoned off as police tried to quickly resolve the situation.

The Metropolitan Fire Brigade was also called to the scene.

 

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