Image from the Rising Sun’s CCTV footage show a man minutes before a fire was lit out the back of the Waimea Rd pub. Police are appealing for information on the man.

Face of an arsonist?

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Images of the man suspected of setting fire to the Rising Sun Tavern at least once have been released by police, and the manager of the pub says someone must know him.

The grainy images captured on CCTV footage from the back on the Rising Sun in the early hours of Monday morning, April 14, show the man walking towards the back of the tavern and less than two minutes later walking away as smoke and a glow from the fire can be seen in the corner of the security footage.

Police say the man is the centre of their investigations but they have been unable to identify him and are hoping someone will come forward with details of him.

Rising Sun general manager, Sam Cotton, says they want the man caught and after six arsons or attempted arsons in the past year, they’re sick of the worry that comes with constantly being targeted.

“If he isn’t caught he will kill someone. We have people who live upstairs and all it takes is for one of these fires to get upstairs and people will die.”

The first arson attack last year meant the pub was closed for nine months while it was fixed. Since then there have been another five arson attempts from late last year to early this year. The latest was in April and was when the footage was captured. Sam says he doesn’t recognise the man and has no idea why someone would want to target the bar.

He says staff and the Christchurch-based owners are at their wits-end and he just wants the man caught.

Anyone with information should contact detective sergeant Mark Kaveney or detective Neil Kitchen, on 546 3840.

Information can also be given anonymously on 0800 555 111.