Brazil nightclub owner blames 'whole country' for tragic fire
SANTA MARIA, Brazil (AP) - The owner of a nightclub in southern Brazil where more than 230 people died in a fire last weekend deflected blame to "the whole country", as well as to architects and inspectors charged with making sure the building was safe, his lawyer said on Wednesday.
Mr Jader Marques said his client, Mr Elissandro Spohr, "regretted having ever been born" because of his grief over the fire, but still blamed Sunday's tragedy on "a succession of errors made by the whole country".
Police investigating the blaze have said it likely started when a country music band performing at the Kiss nightclub in the college town of Santa Maria lit a flare, which ignited flammable sound-proofing foam on the ceiling. That initial error was compounded by the near-total lack of emergency infrastructure such as a fire alarms or sprinkler system. The club also had only one working door and a faulty fire extinguisher.
Mr Marques insisted in a phone interview with The Associated Press that "my client's responsibility is having trusted too much in the inspectors and in those responsible for the construction".