British architect died after sofa caught fire, says coroner

SINGAPORE: A British architect fell asleep drunk on his sofa with a lighted cigarette and died after the sofa caught fire.

The Coroner’s Court heard on Friday that 50—year—old Conor Henry Macginley died from inhalation of fumes and acute alcoholic intoxication.

The Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) was alerted to the fire at Block 7 Marine Terrace at about 2.10pm on March 13 this year.

The unit was engulfed in flames and Macginley’s body was later found burnt beyond recognition.

The court heard that Macginley lived alone and had a habit of drinking and smoking excessively.

There were also several previous incidences where he had set his sofa on fire after falling asleep on it with a lighted cigarette.

Dr Paul Chui, a senior consultant forensic pathologist at the Health Sciences Authority (HSA), revealed in a report that the deceased was highly intoxicated and mentally incapacitated at the time of the incident.

He added that the inhalation of fumes would have worsened the state the deceased was in, leading to death.

Court documents also said that the fire was most probably accidental in nature and that there was no indication that he had wanted to end his life.

— AFP/fa