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Judge: Alleged steeple arsonist fit for trial - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Judge: Alleged steeple arsonist fit for trial

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

A Burlington man charged with a Burlington church arson -- was found competent to stand trial.

Police say Aliaksandr Bychkou, 32, set fire to the steeple at College Street Congregational Church on October 23rd.  He pleaded not guilty to arson and was originally held on $25,000 bail.  But it turns out Immigration and Customs is interested in Bychkou as well. Friday Judge Kupersmith upped the bail to $250,000, in part to make sure he stays in Vermont to face charges.

"There are two parts to bail,  to prevent flight and also to ensure appearance in court and if he is in Federal custody in Boston, we can't have that assurance," Judge Kupersmith said.

Immigration placed a detainer on the Belarus citizen, which means after his state charges are resolved, he will be turned over to the feds for possible deportation.

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