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Brazil fire: club owner blames country

world Updated: Jan 31, 2013 23:58 IST

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.

Lawyer Jader Marques said his client, Elissandro Spohr, “regretted having ever been born” because of his grief over the fire, but blamed the tragedy on “errors made by the whole country.”

Police investigating the blaze have said it probably started when a country music band performing at the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria lit a flare, which ignited flammable soundproofing foam on the ceiling. That was compounded by the lack of emergency infrastructure.