Manhunt after homeless man burned alive in Sicily capital Palermo

Police in Italy are hunting a man who threw flammable liquid over a homeless man as he slept and then set him alight.

The horrific attack was caught on CCTV cameras and the video, being shown by Italian newspaper La Repubblica, has shocked the nation.

Marcello Cimino, 45, died in a ball of flames outside a soup kitchen for the homeless in the Sicilian city of Palermo.

In the video, a hooded man carries a large, heavy bucket and walks carefully towards a corner where Mr Cimino is asleep under heavy bedding.

The man throws most of the liquid over his victim, swinging the bucket two more times to empty it. He moves a few steps away briefly - but comes straight back with a light, engulfing Mr Cimino in flames.

The killer runs away beating at the back of his trousers, which caught alight.

Police are treating Mr Cimino's death as murder.

His screams of pain were heard by people who live nearby and emergency services were called, but he was dead by the time they arrived.

The victim's sister has told how the father of two ended up on the streets after he separated from his partner.

"He was a good person," she said. "The killer is not a human being."

According to reports, Mr Cimino had rowed earlier that day with some shop owners and police have seized buckets from the business normally used to transport olives.

One firefighter told La Repubblica: "Marks from the flames have blackened the walls up to the ceiling. This is compatible with the presence of flammable liquid."

Palermo's mayor, Leoluca Orlando, described the crime as "an act of pure barbarism".

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